Topend Sports Logo

On Australian Sports Culture

If you’re keen to find out more about the relationship between Australians and sport, one word you will soon become familiar with is fanatic. Aussie sports fans tend to be fanatical about their sports. Understanding this will help you break the barrier with strangers if you’re keen to widen your social circle. Chatting about Australian Rules, rugby union, rugby league, cricket, tennis, golf, football, or sundry other endeavors will provide so much ammunition for enthralling conversations that will bring you closer. You might even develop a romantic attachment as you wax lyrical about the Wallabies (Australia’s all-conquering rugby union side) or the Test results at Sydney Cricket Ground. Let’s take a closer look at what sport means to Australians.

Local Obsession with Sports Is Like Religion

The first thing you’ll need to appreciate is that your average Australian treats sport as so much more than a leisure pastime. Their passion for their favorite team often knows no bounds, and while they will be accommodating to rivals, expect the banter to reach a fever pitch during crucial competitions. Should a single Aussie who is a fan of the Wallabies run into an All-Blacks devotee (for the uninitiated, a follower of New Zealand’s national rugby side), they expect any notion of sportsmanship and affable relations to be tested to the limit. If you’re not particularly keen on sport yourself, the best advice would be to pay close attention to the adage, ‘if you can’t beat them, join them.’ In other words, learn to adapt and appreciate their love of whichever sport excites them the most.

Doing Sports with Your Partner Is a Whole New Level

On that latter point, when it comes to social connections, fans who appreciate the same team will already have a lot in common. It should prove easy for them to connect as they chat about the merits of Australian fast bowlers or the competitors for the Australian Football League Grand Final. But even opposites can attract. An excellent way to break the ice would be referring to DatingReviews, which provides an overview of the best places to meet in the online environment. After checking out reviews of what these matchmaking services offer their members, you can follow links to the homepages and register. These dating sites always provide a relaxing environment where like-minded individuals can connect. There will be chat rooms where fans of cricket, rugby, soccer, or Aussie rules can touch base and get to know each other. Nobody is ever left out, so if you’re a relative novice when it comes to sport (say, a wannabe cricket fan who doesn’t appreciate the difference between a googly and a wrist-spun delivery), the other users will be only too happy to take you under their wing and explain everything involved. This is always an excellent way for strangers to develop a rapport.

Most Popular and National Sports in Australia

Australians are renowned for being excellent at several major sports. The passion for each is often dependent on geographical location, with Sydney being popular for rugby league, while Victorians gravitate towards the rough and tumble of Australian rules football. There are other long-standing sporting passions, such as The Ashes, the cricketing tournament fought between Australia and England. The latter originated in 1882 after a satirical news report bemoaned the demise of English cricket following a shock Aussie win at The Oval in London. Australia has also produced an array of tennis stars who have excelled at their sport, including Rod Laver, Ken Rosewall, Margaret Court, and Evonne Goolagong. They have been less successful as a soccer nation, but while they have never won the World Cup, they have won four Nations Cup titles and the 2015 Asian Cup. The Wallabies have won the rugby union World Cup twice, in 1991 and 1999. The rugby league-playing Wallabies are the most successful in the world, having contested all 15 World Cups, winning 11 of these.

big crowds attend AFL games big crowds attend AFL games every weekend

Australian Sports Power Couples 

- Matt To’omua and Ellyse Perry

Although their relationship floundered this summer, for a while Wallabies rugby union star To’omua and cricketing heroine Ellyse Perry were a golden couple of Australian sport. To’omua operates as a flyhalf and has represented his country over 35 times since 2013. Perry’s claim to fame is that she was the youngest Australian to receive an international cap, aged 16. She has also appeared for Australia in the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

- Charlotte Caslick and Lewis Holland

Hailing from Brisbane in Queensland, Caslick is a formidable player of rugby union, playing for Australia at sevens and touch football. She received Olympic gold at Rio de Janeiro in 2016. New South Wales-born Holland is also a rugby star with 28 caps. He was a squad member of the Aussie rugby sevens side at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. They have since swapped rugby boots for farm boots, collaborating on a cattle farm.

- Safwan Khalil and Carmen Marton

Born in Tripoli, Lebanon, Khalil has progressed to turning out for Australia in the Olympics as a taekwondo exponent. He married fellow Australian martial arts exponent Marton under Islamic law before the London Olympics in 2012. They are a classic example of romance being forged by a shared commitment to be the best in their sporting endeavors. 

As we have illustrated, there is an indivisible bond between Australians and their sport. Perhaps this has something to do with the sunny climate down there and the wealth of wide-open spaces where rugby (both union and league), cricket, tennis, Aussie Rules, and soccer can attract legions of eager devotees all year round. Another unavoidable aspect is what could be described as the ‘colonial chip on the shoulder.’ Australians just love competing against England, the main power of the old British Empire, and relish the prospect of beating the country that once ruled their nation (thereby considering themselves culturally superior!) Whatever Australian sport you choose to play or watch, one thing can be guaranteed. You’ll soon find yourself immersed in a dimension where winning is everything.

Related Pages

send us a comment Any comments, suggestions, or corrections? Please let us know.

Australia Extra

All about sport in Australia — popular sports, players, results, major events and facilities. All see details of sport in every country.

 → How to Cite