ABC Radio Grandstand
|This article relies on references to primary sources. (May 2010)|
ABC Radio Grandstand is a live radio sports focused commentary and talk-back program which runs on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation local radio network across Australia and on one digital-only station. The program runs on Saturdays and Sundays, typically from noon or an hour before, until 6 pm. Sports that are covered by ABC Radio under the Grandstand banner include Test and One Day International cricket, Rugby League (mostly in Queensland and New South Wales), the Summer Olympics, Australian Football League games, Australian Open tennis and occasional soccer matches, including games involving the Socceroos and the A-League grand final. However, when there are major football, cricket or tennis matches in progress, or the Olympics and Commonwealth Games, the coverage is often continued for the entirety of the relevant time frame if Grandstand is broadcasting the competition, as opposed to simply reporting the results. This can result in broadcasts in the early hours of the morning if Australia is playing in a cricket Test on another side of the world.
Being a national program with significant local content, Grandstand includes live crosses to local ABC radio stations for sporting updates as well as centralised broadcasts of major events.
- Charlie King (NT)
- Gerard Whateley (Vic)
- Dan Lonergan (Vic)
- Quentin Hull (QLD)
- Simone Thurtell (NSW)
- Karen Tighe (WA)
- Peter Walsh (SA)
- Clint Wheeldon (WA)
- David Morrow (NSW)
- Jim Maxwell (NSW)
- Drew Morphett (VIC)
- Alistair Nicholson (QLD)
- Corbin Middlemas (WA)
- Matt Clinch (SA)
- Peter Newlinds (Tas)
- Zane Bojack (QLD)
- Shannon Byrne (NSW)
During the summer months, when cricket is predominant, National Grandstand is run across the country. Whenever an international cricket match is in progress, full commentary of the match is provided, and other sports are fitted in during breaks in play, or rain delays and so forth. Day-night matches continue into the night, and some night-time basketball or soccer matches are provided to certain states outside the usual timeslot if a team from the state is in action. When there is no international cricket in progress, the time is divided up more evenly among various sports. There are regular phone-ins to reporters at various sports events across the country for score updates as well as short stints of commentary and analysis from the reporter. This is mixed in with in-depth, pre-arranged interviews with sports administrators, coaches, scientists and athletes from a variety of fields. Sometimes there are panel discussions to analyse future or recent events, as well as opportunities for members of the public to partake in discussions or compete in sports quizzes.
During the winter seasons, the show is divided into Northern Grandstand (NSW and QLD) and Southern Grandstand. The northern states are given commentary of rugby league and rugby union matches, and the southern states receive coverage of Australian rules football. Matches are also held on Friday and Saturday nights. Unlike in Summer Grandstand, the winter coverage is almost entirely focused on Australian rules football and rugby at the exclusion of all other sports. While the cricket matches are often bookended by analysis by commentators for around 15 minutes before and after the start of play, football matches often have 90 minutes of preview and post-match discussion and interviews, while analysis will go on throughout the half-time break, whereas the longer breaks during the cricket season are usually used to go through other sports. Treatment of other sports is restricted to a perfunctory reading of scores, and there are no interview segments or reports on other sports, except for a 20-minute Grandstand Wrap at the end of Sunday afternoon. On Saturdays, the typical format is to 2–3 hours of football talk before the afternoon match, followed by the match itself and another 2–3 hours of post-match talk and a preview of the night match, before the evening match and another hour of analysis. As many matches occur at the same time, different states will received different games depending, with priority given to matches involving a team from the state in question.
Grandstand Rugby League
Grandstand Rugby League is the ABC's flagship NRL programme nationally. The programme calls up to 5 NRL games live a week with in depth previews and reviews, analysis, extensive talkback and interviews, and live score updates of other matches.
Grandstand AFL is ABC's flagship sports programme in the southern states. The programme calls six AFL games live a week with further match preview, analysis and talkback of the game. An introduction in 2008 was the Sunday Inquisition with Gerard Whateley highlighting the good and the bad of the AFL games for the past week. Coverage preference is given to local teams in their state. National coverage for games outside the home state is determined by the match with the highest appeal.
Commentators: Dan Lonergan, Drew Morphett, Gerard Whateley, Rob Waters, Quentin Hull, Rob Cross, Roger Wills, Peter Walsh, Clint Wheeldon, Corbin Middlemas, Adam White, Jarrod Molloy, Chris Grant, Matt Clinch, Matthew Knights, Austinn Jones, David Parkin, Peter Schwab, Ken Judge, Jon Dorotich, Ashley Hansen Aaron Lord, Mark McLean, Kellie Underwood, Stan Alves, Sam Lane and Peter Brukner
The lead ABC cricket commentators are as follows:
- Terry Alderman - Former Australian right-arm fast-medium bowler, who has played 41 Tests and 65 One-Dayers for Australia. Alderman is most notable for overtaking Jim Laker's 42 Test wickets during the 1981 tour of England. He was chosen to tour England in 1981 and in 1982, his cricketing career was cut short when he had a shoulder injury (received after tackling an English ground-invader) at the WACA Ground.
- Geoff Lawson - Former coach of Pakistan. He has played over 120 Test and One Day cricket matches for Australia and has a Test bowling average of 30.56.
- Jim Maxwell - Highly experienced and highly regarded cricket commentator, Maxwell has covered many Australian One-Day, Test and World Cup matches. He also has broadcast many Rugby Union, Rugby League, golf, hockey and many Olympic Games.
- Drew Morphett - He has covered AFL matches, Australian Open tennis, golf and broadcasting four Olympics.
- Kerry O'Keefe - "The Skull" is arguably the most popular on the ABC Grandstand cricket broadcast team. Noted for his sense of humour (and his infamous laugh), he brings entertainment to any cricket coverage. Playing 24 Tests for Australia between 1971 and 1977, he was also a notable leg break bowler who has taken 53 wickets at an average of 38.07.
- Damien Fleming - The ABC's resident "bowlologist". He has an outstanding bowling record in Test, One Day International and State cricket for Australia as he mastered the art of swing bowling. Fleming also commentates on Ford Ranger Cup State cricket matches for Fox Sports Australia. His record for Test matches reads as 20 matches, 75 wickets, 25.85 bowling average, 3 five wicket hauls and has best bowling figures of 5/30. His One-Day record is just as impressive; 88 matches, 134 wickets, 25.38 bowling average, 1 five wicket haul and best bowling of 5/36.
Former ABC cricket commentators
- Glenn Mitchell - Joining the ABC Grandstand team in 1990, Mitchell is a valuable member who contributes to the domestic cricket coverage and AFL. Glenn has covered the cycling events at the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games for the ABC, as well as the cycling at the 1998 Commonwealth Games, Mitchell resigned from the ABC in May 2011.
- Peter Roebuck - Former English county cricket captain for Somerset from 1971 to 1981. Batted right-handed and occasionally bowled off-spin. Once captained England to a loss in the Netherlands; Roebuck died while on assignment for the ABC on 13 November 2011.