THIS is Adam Goodes’ home stage, but could the Sydney veteran be set to play a starring role in a new sporting code?
The former North Ballarat Rebel is widely tipped to have the honour of throwing out the opening pitch of the Major League Baseball season at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Saturday night.
Organisers from Moore Sports and Destination NSW yesterday insisted a final decision was yet to be made on who will officially launch the season-opening clash between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks.
The opening pitch is a ceremonial duty that has been carried out on MLB’s opening day by American presidents, including Bill Clinton, George W Bush and Barack Obama and Hollywood A-listers like Tom Hanks.
Goodes is one of the historic venue’s favourite sons.
Hailing from Horsham, Goodes has amassed 331 AFL games.
He is a dual-Brownlow medalist, two-time premiership player, four-time All-Australian, member of the Indigenous Team of the Century and has captained the Sydney Swans.
The 34-year-old was earlier this year declared the 2014 Australian of the Year for his involvement in indigenous and anti-racism issues.
An inflamed knee injury will delay Goodes’ start this AFL season by about four or five weeks and he likely must continue to monitor the chronic problem all season,
but it should not affect his pitching arm.
Goodes and fellow Sydney sporting superstars Sonny Bill Williams (from NRL team Sydney Roosters) and Alessandro Del Piero (from A-League soccer club Sydney FC) welcomed the Dodgers’ $238-million pitcher Clayton Kershaw and Diamondbacks’ slugger Paul Goldschmidt to the SCG yesterday, posing for a photo in front of the historic Members Pavilion.
A decision is also yet to be made on who will throw out the first pitch on Sunday, but it’s believed it will come from Australian MLB talent.