My wife Delma of 44 years is an avid tennis television watcher and still plays when opportunity arises in a Tweed Heads mid week social tennis group.
Mum (Delma) was the tennis taxi for our four children – mid week training and then Saturday mornings in the Australian summer sports season, off they would all go to the Moruya Tennis Courts. Each of our four grew up on tennis.
In the winter season it was field hockey. The same process occurred.
Delma invariably finds a channel which is showing international tennis. Delma knows the tennis player’s names, the tournaments – but here is the drill – our Australian summer hosts these international tennis tournaments.
Inevitably Delma is watching international tennis tournaments in our autumn, winter and spring - being held elsewhere - USA, Europe, England, Canada, India, Japan, Asia … to name but a few.
In other words international sport can be viewed on Australian television anytime, anywhere, depending on the international time zones.
Another classic example of this is the very popular English Premier League (EPL) soccer. Soccer is a winter sport in Australia. The EPL in effect runs during our summer months.
The EPL is a massive television draw card. Always has been.
There are television sport channels that have field hockey, ice hockey, US Gridiron, Baseball, Rugby, Basketball …whatever. Australians watch them. They are being played in international time zones other than their own.
It is said Australians are sport mad. I recall seeing a documentary of the Ashes Test Cricket commentary team using the fixed end of a pencil for the sound of ball on willow. Sometimes the pencil hit the desk for the sound effect - before the ball was actually at the crease. Timing was critical in both scenarios.
Australian Prime Ministers have invariably attended sporting events - a vote winner! Sport is Australia’s ‘lingua franca’.
This is why in 1982 the Heads of Churches endorsed Sports Chaplaincy when a small team of senior clergy (the late Kenneth McDowell and the late Roger Reid) along with me, met with each of the Church heads seeking their support in developing such a ministry.
Sport was becoming an industry, indeed a major industry and the industrial chaplaincy model was a good fit - one chaplain to each professional sport on behalf Australian Christianity.
This was my vision. This short 4 minute video illustrates this.
Dr Mark Tronson - a 4 min video
Chairman – Well-Being Australia
Baptist Minister 44 years
- 1984 - Australian cricket team chaplain 17 years (Ret)
- 2001 - Life After Cricket (18 years Ret)
- 2009 - Olympic Ministry Medal – presented by Carl Lewis
- 2019 - The Gutenberg - (ARPA Christian Media premier award)
Gutenberg video - 2min 14sec
Married to Delma for 44 years with 4 children and 5 grand children