Game of the Century
The current rules of Australian football may be traced to a meeting held on May 17, 1859 at the Parade Hotel, later the MCG Hotel, on Wellington Parade. There, four members of the Melbourne Football Club – William Hamersley, Thomas Smith, James Thompson and Tom Wills – drafted the 10 laws that form the platform from which the Australian code evolved. Geelong v South Melbourne played on 4 September 1886 is, arguably, the most important Aussie Rules game to be played in the 19th century. Although regular final games had not yet been instituted, the VFA arranged this game so as to determine the Premiers for 1886; both teams had gone through the season undefeated. The game was held at South’s Emerald Hill ground and a then-record crowd of 34,121 paid 6d per head for a total revenue of ₤747/7/-. It was said that many more crowded into the ground without paying.