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Tuesday, January 19 2021 @ 10:22 am ACDT

Jurrah lights up China match


A fast finishing Melbourne yesterday defeated Brisbane in the Shanghai Showdown. The Dees trailed by as much as 29 points in the final term, but managed to win the match with the last kick of the game, off the boot of Liam Jurrah. This took his tally to five goals and helped earn him Best on Ground.

The match was played out in front of 7,000 fans at Jiangwan Stadium, less than a quarter of the stadium's capacity, and the empty seats were clearly evident on television. An AFL report prior to the match suggested a possible television audience of 30 million. If that many tuned in for the contest it would be less than 3 percent of China's population but more than Australia's whole population. The AFL Grand Final draws around 2.5 million viewers in Australia (12% of population); to reach a total number that is twelve times that amount for a first match on Chinese soil would be quite impressive.

Overall the AFL was happy with the experiment, with David Matthews quoted saying, "Today’s match was a fantastic exhibition of Australian Football in front of a very enthusiastic and big crowd which exceeded our expectations. There’s no doubt we would play another game in China and we will work with our partners and AFL clubs to make that happen.”

Final scores: Melbourne 12.12 (84) defeated Brisbane Lions 11.13 (79)

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Jurrah lights up China match | 10 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
30 million tune in to China match
Authored by: Mister Football on Monday, October 18 2010 @ 10:31 pm ACDT

Where does that 30 million figure come from?

Is that actual audience or potential vieweing audience?

Mister Football

30 million tune in to China match
Authored by: chaos on Tuesday, October 19 2010 @ 12:10 am ACDT

Was there to watch the AFL match with a few hundred others who were also in Shanghai for the Asian Champs the day before. (ie we made up part of the few thousand strong crowd).
Don't know why the organisers didn't arrange to fill the stands with locals.
There were ticket scalpers outside the ground, selling counterfeit tickets apparently because a friend bought one which was rejected by the ticket checkers.
Half time was a real spectacle with hundreds of Chinese boys and girls playing 'Little League' games or kick-to-kick. They certainly seemed to know the rules, bouncing and handballing or at least attempting to and they celebrated each goal very enthusiastically.

30 million tune in to China match
Authored by: Brett Northey on Tuesday, October 19 2010 @ 12:37 pm ACDT

I think the "30 million tune in to China match" headline was probably inspired by an AFL story which said that the "match which will be broadcast live in Mandarin and English to an estimated 30 million people in the Shanghai region on International Channel Shanghai and Great Sports Channel".

I suspect we don't have any evidence that the actual number of viewers was 30 million, probably just a potential number, or average for those channels? I think it appropriate we adjust the headline.

Brett Northey - Co-founder and Chief Editor of WFN

Jurrah lights up China match
Authored by: Brett Northey on Tuesday, October 19 2010 @ 12:52 pm ACDT

Quite a bit of media in Australia about the match:


Video supposedly (wasn't working when I tried it):


The following story has some good comments/info:

Dees and Lions bring down great wall

such as:

It was a flat encounter before until Jurrah exploded in the final term, kicking three goals and hauling in the most spectacular mark ever taken on Chinese soil.

He was later swamped by Chinese autograph hunters and Melbourne supporters who made the trip to witness the 12.12 (84) to 11.13 (79) win.


Jurrah, the 22-year-old plucked from the red sand of the central Australian desert, lifted the entire crowd, many of whom spent the first half quiet an confused.

After a request from the clubs, the AFL agreed to make it a 16-a-side encounter. Neither club had enough fit and players to field teams of 22.

The Lions went as far as calling on Adam Spackman, who is a member of the football department staff, but not an officially listed player.

Spackman, formerly rookie listed by the Lions, spent this year focusing on his administrative role and playing in the Lions' twos when his diary permitted.

And in the early going, it was the kind of match you would expect between two rusty teams just 15 days after the premier was finally decided.

The skills were scratchy, even though the pressure was down, but at least there were flashes of brilliance to cheer - courtesy of Jurrah.

With the humidity high and the temperature pushing 30 degrees, it was a searching physical test for two teams at the start of another pre-season campaign.


The locals, revved up by a Chinese commentator over the PA system, looked to be genuinely enjoying themselves - even if they excitedly clapped the first five behinds of the game before experiencing the "real thing", a six pointer.

Just the fact that the day went off seamlessly was enough, and the corporates had a good time in the tents was enough.

But the league knows that the only way to real make an impact is to play for four points.

As the AFL forever attempts to push its boundaries, don't rule it out some time in the next five years.

Brett Northey - Co-founder and Chief Editor of WFN

Jurrah lights up China match
Authored by: Michael Christiansen on Tuesday, October 19 2010 @ 01:38 pm ACDT

I thought the China vs Japan warm up match was pretty exciting.

btw - am reading the "Changi Brownlow" presently. The biggest and best season of footy outside of Australia may well have been on Singapore island back in 1942.

How times have changed that almost 70 years on, we see a Japan vs China game of footy held in mainland China.

Just need Japan to host China and get some form of annual rivalry match going.

Jurrah lights up China match
Authored by: Brett Northey on Tuesday, October 19 2010 @ 05:41 pm ACDT

Yao Ming may be model for AFL expansion

Brett Northey - Co-founder and Chief Editor of WFN

Jurrah lights up China match
Authored by: Ash Nugent on Tuesday, October 19 2010 @ 05:48 pm ACDT

30 million television audience was reported on one of the news bulletins in Melbourne following the match. GSP alone apparently reaches an audience of 30+ million. Actual figure will never be known because it is an estimate, but even Australian broadcast figures are estimates (as was the crowd figure at the match).

Jurrah lights up China match
Authored by: Brett Northey on Tuesday, October 19 2010 @ 06:59 pm ACDT

Many things are estimates but I guess there are degrees to how rough the numbers are. 7000 was an estimate for the crowd by the AFL based on seeing the crowd, another media source said about 6000, so same ballpark. But at this stage the 30 million does sound like something just based on averages (even the Melbourne TV report), in which case for all we know everyone could have turned off when the footy came on. Australian broadcast numbers are informed estimates based on statistics collected from electronic surveys. So I'm much more comfortable if we emphasise the "potential" audience. Perhaps that's just me being boringly conservative.

Brett Northey - Co-founder and Chief Editor of WFN

Jurrah lights up China match
Authored by: brentonb on Tuesday, October 19 2010 @ 10:42 pm ACDT

The News Presenter on which ever channel I was whatching here in Sydney said that the crowd was kept to a minimum for security reasons ?

Jurrah lights up China match
Authored by: Brett Northey on Tuesday, October 19 2010 @ 11:45 pm ACDT

The AFL press release states that:

"The match was broadcast live on the Mandarin speaking Great Sports Channel and English language International Channel Shanghai to an estimated 30 million viewers in the Shanghai region."

So I guess that justifies the original headline. I still take that number with a grain of salt but I hope it is true. Whatever the case may be, it seems like a successful day and hopefully the first of many.

Brett Northey - Co-founder and Chief Editor of WFN