I remember going to the Commonwealth Games in 2006. Being in awe of my favourite players, stunned at their athleticism, and quietly mourning the absence of Liz Ellis, who’d wrecked her knee a few months earlier. In Melbourne’s carnival-like atmosphere, my biggest surprise was netball match audiences. They were so polite. Crazy wigs and make-up – no. Screeches of ‘held ball, umpire!’ – never. There was just a gentle smattering of applause when the Aussies took the court, a murmured groan of disbelief when New Zealand won the gold, and little of the hype seen elsewhere in the city. It was such a contrast to the raucous nettie crowds back home in Western Australia.