AFL 2 years ago

Orange army growing for Giants

  • Orange army growing for Giants

    PERTH, AUSTRALIA - MAY 07: Dylan Shiel of the Giants handballs during the round seven AFL match between the Fremantle Dockers and the Greater Western Sydney Giants at Domain Stadium on May 7, 2016 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)

Successive AFL home games against two sides they've never hosted in Sydney are set to show how many people are jumping on the GWS Giants bandwagon.

The fifth-placed Giants are riding a franchise-record four-match winning streak and have a chance to build that momentum with consecutive Spotless Stadium fixtures against Gold Coast and Western Bulldogs.

The Giants have played three home games against both clubs, but all six of those matches were played in Canberra.

They averaged 7450 across the matches with the Suns and 8041 for the Bulldogs clashes.

After two home games in Canberra and one in Sydney this year, the Giants are averaging 12,483 spectators, a marked increase on last year's season mark of 10,786.

Away from the venues, the numbers of the orange army are also swelling.

Memberships are over 12,500, up around 20 per cent on the same time last year, with club officials confident of hitting the 15,000 mark before the season ends.

The Giants' only game in Sydney this year against three-time defending premiers Hawthorn established an attendance landmark for the AFL's youngest club.

The crowd of 13,766 was the biggest in the club's history at the venue outside of a Sydney derby.

That figure might not have rugby league officials quaking, but it was still significantly bigger than the attendances for the two NRL games in Sydney that day.

"I think there's real momentum starting to build with the club," Giants winger Tom Scully told AAP.

"Last week for our first game (this season) at Spotless Stadium we had (over) 13,500 there and the atmosphere was amazing.

"The playing group are really starting to notice people getting behind the Giants and are generally interested and excited by the brand of footy we play.

"We don't have that many supporters at the moment, but they are certainly very loyal and very supportive of us which the boys appreciate.

"I think as we continue to grow as a footy club obviously our support is going to keep growing."

For the first time in their five-year history the Giants will have more than one set of back-to-back home games in the same campaign.

They play well supported Melbourne glamour clubs Carlton and Collingwood in successive matches separated by a bye in June and July and host both West Australian clubs in August.

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