Is it enough to get you out of the lounge?

22:07, Mar 06 2012

I have to admit I'm a big fan of Dunedin's roofed stadium.

For all the history and sentimentality which surrouned Carisbrook I couldn't wait to see the back of the place.

The abysmal decision to park the media in a porta-cabin out the back of the terraces made it the worse ground in the country to cover a game in.

If it wasn't a steady stream of spectators wandering past and obstructing your view there was a steady stream of beer cans landing on the roof like grenades from the corporate box above.

Now we have a state-of-the-art stadium just up the road (yes, I know it's a five-hour round trip. We got home at 1am from last Saturday's game) where you are guaranteed a dry bum, and the best part is that Southlanders (unless you happen to pay Otago Regional Council rates) haven't had to contribute a bean.

The World Cup games were amongst the best rugby experiences I've had and the Highlanders win over the Crusaders last weekend was up there as well.

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All Black and Crusaders halfback Andy Ellis rates it one of the best surfaces he's played on and said the atmosphere was more like playing in front of 70,000 people than the 23,000 who were there.

This weekend's game against the Waratahs doesn't have quite the same attraction but it's still sold more than 10,000 tickets and it's only halfway through the week.

The Highlanders have actually got some players worth paying the admission to watch. Hosea Gear, Ben Smith, Adam Thomson, Andrew Hore, Jason Rutledge off the bench _ there's no shortage of X-factor there.

After playing within themselves against the Chiefs, the Highlanders showed against the Crusaders that they can also attack with ball in hand. As I wrote in today's paper, things are pretty good in Highlandersland right now.

The question is, is it all enough to get you off the couch and on the road to Dunedin?

Have you been to a game at Dunedin Stadium and how did you find it?

If you haven't, do you plan on heading up there at some stage? (let us know by voting in our poll here)

The Southland Times