Fi­nals fever as fans back their team from all cor­ners of globe

The Advertiser - - NEWS - ROSE­MARIE LENTINI NEW YORK RHIAN DEUTROM LON­DON

AFL fi­nals fever has swept the world with fans set to tune in to cheer the Crows from dif­fer­ent cor­ners of the globe.

Crows lover Amanda Wight, who moved to New York two months ago from Mel­bourne, has been “get­ting up at all sorts of hours to watch” her side claw its way into the grand fi­nal.

The 34-year-old will watch the clash with hun­dreds of Aussies at a mas­sive event at gas­tropub 5thand­mad in Man­hat­tan’s Mid­town, or­gan­ised by the Big Ap­ple’s only AFL team, the New York Mag­pies.

But she wishes she could see the Crows fly­ing high at the MCG.

“I can’t be­lieve all my fam­ily has tick­ets. They’re all trekking over from coun­try South Aus­tralia, across the border to cheer them on and I’m not go­ing to be there. But I’ll be sure to make a lot of noise and cheer them on,” she said.

Across the pond, AFL fans have pulled all-nighters to se­cure prime view­ing po­si­tions.

Pubs across Lon­don, es­pe­cially Aussie-cen­tric Clapham, have ap­plied for ex­tended li­censes to accom- mo­date grand fi­nal fes­tiv­i­ties. Ade­laide na­tive Jemma Loewen­thal, 31, was just a kid when her beloved Crows won their last grand fi­nal.

She’ll watch with bated breath at a party hosted by her lo­cal foot­ball club, the South East Lon­don Gi­ants.

“We are deck­ing it out in both teams’ colours and the pub is putting on a full English break­fast for every­one,” said the Crows diehard, who has even con­verted her Port Ade­laide-lov­ing hus­band, Nick Orr.

“I made it a point when we met that he wasn’t al­lowed to have Port as his favourite team, it was a real deal-breaker. I’ve soft­ened a bit now so he does go for both Port Ade­laide and the Crows”.

An­other Crows sup­porter who is cur­rently liv­ing in the UK, 18-year-old Chloe Go­goll, said she had to get cre­ative be­fore the big game.

“I didn’t bring any Crows gear over with me so this week I’ve learnt to cro­chet and I’ve put to­gether a scarf so that I have some­thing for the big day,” the South Aus­tralian said.

TIMES SQUARE: Kathryn Smith, Caro­line Say­ers, Ed­ward Smith, Michael Heibl, Amanda Wight and Matthew War­dle.

LON­DON: Tom Dean and Jemma Loewen­tahl.

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