The domestic rugby league season is done and dusted with the Sydney Roosters crowned the NRL premiers.
A World Cup in Britain starts on October 26 but the main attention now turns to summer sports.
The cricket season remains high profile and gets prominent television, newspaper and radio coverage. And it will again this summer with another Ashes series between Australia and England starting next month.
But for me the sleeping giant is the A-League which starts its ninth season this weekend.
I think the A-League’s appeal is not only growing with its longtime fan base but also is attracting many newcomers to the game who want to give it a go.
The A-League is exciting, quick, skilful, and has amazing crowd support.
It’s a competition gathering more respect with each season. Its scheduling in the spring, summer and autumn months is a winner.
The A-League is a real alternative to many people who are not that fussed about cricket, golf, or water sports, or even horse racing.
The A-League is not only a top competition for those who may only ever reach this level as players but it also provides opportunity for young talent to show they are genuine contenders to play in the professional leagues overseas.
Talent scouts can run their rule over Australia’s young talent in the A-League knowing they are the real deal and worth a punt.
Proven performers on the world stage such as Australian topliners Brett Emerton and Harry Kewell, and Italian superstar Alessandro Del Piero are bringing their skills and knowledge to the A-League.
Del Piero’s arrival at Sydney FC has been like finding a goldmine for Football Federation Australia. He’s been a marketing Godsend.
His drawing power at all venues is magnetic.
The immediate success with Western Sydney Wanderers winning the premiership trophy and making a grand final in their first season has seen the game skyrocket in popularity.
The FFA’s decision to bring in a second Sydney-based team was a master stroke.
Western Sydney is the heartland of the game and the army of fans were just waiting for the call to unite and support a team they could call their own.
The Wanderers kick-off Saturday night against Central Coast Mariners at Gosford. It was the Mariners who beat them in last season’s grand final.
Let the A-League season begin.