‘I got here at 3am and there were people in front of me’

The fifth and final Ashes Test match begins in Sydney today and with that comes an annual tradition. Although the series has already been won by , thousands of SCG Members lined up in the early hours this morning to secure the best seats at the historic ground. One patron even began queueing at 3am.

Fans, both young and old and from all parts of NSW, were undeterred by the poor weather as they queued for hours, with the line stretching hundreds of metres. Despite the members gates opening at 7am, Leo Mellrose was among the first patrons to line up. “I got here at around 3 in the morning and there were still seven people in front of me”.

Mr Mellrose has attended all days of the Sydney Test Match for four decades and says that he sees the practice of lining up as an “annual tradition”.

“I usually get down here an hour earlier [in the line] for an Ashes Test Match. It’s the one you want to get to”

Tim Ruddell has been coming down from Newcastle with his family for 20 years with 15 members of his family. “We got here at 4:15 this morning to be the first 50 people here”. Queuing for the Sydney Test Match has become a family tradition for Mr Ruddell. “Twenty years ago, it was the parents who were running for the seats. Now the kids have grown up and they’re the ones making the mad dash”.

English supporters are also partaking in the tradition. Anna Hall, a British national living in Sydney, has attended the first day of the Sydney Test Match for the past six years. “It’s tradition with my friends, the 5am dash,” she explained. “It took over 45 minutes just to get a coffee; that’s how many people are here.”

The past two Sydney Test Matches have been affected by rain, and it appears the weather may wreak havoc once more with rain predicted on the first, fourth and fifth days.

However, this hasn’t deterred fans from piling into the stadium by their thousands. Ian McGuire, who has gone to the past 30 test matches at the ground and the last four with his grandson says that it is important to “turn up and hope for the best”.

The first three days of the Test match have been sold out.

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