Monday, 19 December 2011

A Room With a View?

Cadogan and Hall were at Adelaide Oval yesterday afternoon/evening for the SA v Victoria (or rather, Adelaide Strikers v Melbourne Renegades) T20 match.  A splendid win for Adelaide and, having also seen them play well in the 50-over competition, it is something of a mystery as to why there are doing so poorly in the Sheffield Shield.

However, cricket is not the focus here.  Rather, it is the new(ish) Members' Dining Room.

This was the first time we had taken up one of SACA's Summer of Dining offers and were looking forward enthusiastically to the carvery and booze package.  The food, incidentally, was good and the bubbles flowed freely, so no complaints there.

Our point of contention, put quite simply, is that we couldn't see the game!  We were in the front row of the dining room and had anticipated being able to scoff and watch the cricket throughout, the only movement necessary being that of getting up to fill another plate at the buffet.  Nevertheless, we couldn't see a thing.  Now, as astute as we are, we can't possibly be the first people to have noticed this, so surely it is not beyond the wit of man to rectify the situation.   Our understanding is that part of the whole rationale behind the western stand redevelopment was indeed to create a room in which members could enjoy a decent lunch, a glass or two of claret and watch the cricket.  And yet this last, some may even say vital, element seems to have been completely overlooked.  How this was not picked up during the design process is somewhat bamboozling, but what is more baffling is why no-one has done anything about it as the new stand enters its second year of existence.

Taking out a row of seats in front of the dining room, or simply raising the floor by about 30cm would seem to our untutored eye to be enough to do the job.  I understand, of course, that it is probably not as simple as this but surely some relatively straightforward solution can be found.  As much as we enjoyed the game and the atmosphere, there is little likelihood that we will take up one of these options again in the future (at the test match, for instance) given that it is literally impossible to watch the game while troughing down.  Fellow members had to resort to standing against the window of the dining room (after the roast pork and before the pudding) in order to be able to see any of the cricket at all.

Of course, for corporate bods at Adelaide Oval on a company jolly, watching the cricket is a secondary concern and so in this case poor sight lines might not be that important, but this is the Members' Dining Room we are talking about, for heaven's sake.  Membership of SACA does presuppose that one has at least a passing interest in the game of cricket.

We are of course fully prepared to admit that we are completely wrong about this and that other members have no issue at all with the arrangements, but in all honesty we suspect that others must have felt the same frustration.  If this is the case, surely a time will come when members decline to use the dining room at all,  and then where will be?  Perhaps some action should be taken before it comes to that.