SportsHosts SuperUser, Ana Maria, is the perfect example of the fascinating people you can meet when hosting a GameDay. She is passionate about sport, meeting new people and experiencing new cultures.
Blog written by: Ana Maria Aguado
I'm Ana Maria Aguado, from Cali- Colombia, the world's capital of salsa dancing. My interest to study abroad and live the experience of getting in touch with different cultures, enhance a second language (English), and attend classes in a high level international school, brought me to Melbourne in July of 2017. I am undertaking a Master of Communications and Media Studies at Monash University.
Back in Colombia, I graduated as an Industrial Designer, but worked in advertising for over 7 years.
My family has always encouraged and supported us in taking part of sports teams and artistic activities. I have always leaned more towards arts, but looking up to my cousins that played in their college teams, and my uncle that used to be goalkeeper in a second division futbol team back in the days. I'm not the best athlete, however, my love for sports has always been there, increasingly growing with the recent participation and excellent performance of Colombian teams and athletes in worldwide competitions like the World Cup, the Olympics, Cycling tours, among others.
I can't say I have just one favourite sport. I enjoy watching Tennis (because winning is more about the mind, and each point can be definite in a way - it is VERY exciting), Futbol (because this is the sport that I grew up with) and Basketball (very dynamic, with points every time each team reaches the opponent's side).
And since I've been in Melbourne, I'm a HUGE fan of AFL. I like everything about it, the players are very young and tough and the rules make it very exciting. The fact that each goal is worth 6 points makes it very dynamic and the whole history around the sport.
These 4 are the sports that I actually sit down and watch, with popcorn. Or go out to a pub and relax while watching some games with friends.
My favourite team is any that carries the tri-color (yellow, blue and red) with it. Colombians are very supportive people, we showed it in the last Australian Open with the Colombian doubles' team that went all the way to the finals. We just cheer for any Colombian playing outside; they make us proud. I strongly believe that if more Colombian athletes are out there standing out, they'll put the name of our country under another standard, and erase the stereotypes of our troubled past.
But there's a team that I support back home, literally, since birth. This is the story: In Cali there are 2 main futbol teams in the first division: 'Deportivo Cali' and 'America de Cali' There has always existed rivalry between these two. My mom is a fan of America, and my dad of DeporCali. On December 17th 1986, the day before I was born, these two teams played the finals of the Colombian championship. So my parents made a bet, whichever team won I would be a supporter of it. America won, and the rest is history.
Favourite Sporting Memory:
It was in Brazil, July 2014. It had been 16 years since Colombia went to its last FIFA WorldCup. Colombia had an outstanding performance in that tournament: fair play, best goal scored, it was a revelation team, nobody wasn't expecting such a participation.
Colombia had been a 'local' team during the whole tournament in Brazil. Supporters all over latin america travelled to cheer for the tricolor. It was a classic match when Colombia played against Brazil for the final fourths. In a tight game Colombia lost 2-1. It was devastating for me. However, this event placed Colombia in the top of mind of the worldwide audience, and even got some of the players of the team to sign up in renowned teams in Europe. Colombia's team performance in this World Cup threw down any existing barriers between Colombia and the rest of the world, and inspired our children to aim high for their dreams.