Cricket fans and commentators have expressed their disappointment at the paltry crowd that turned up to watch Australia's T20 clash with the West Indies on the Gold Coast on Wednesday night.
Matthew Wade and Mitchell Starc managed to squeeze Australia to a thrilling three-wicket victory with one ball to spare in the T20 international at Metricon Stadium.
'DISRESPECT': Shane Warne's daughter hits out over Channel 9 act
Australia needed 11 to win from Sheldon Cottrell's final over, with wicketkeeper-batsman Wade (39 not out off 29 balls) dropped by Raymon Reifer with seven still needed.
Kyle Mayers then failed to cling on to another chance in the deep to get rid of Starc off the fourth ball, before the paceman took advantage of his reprieve to get the hosts across the line with two off the penultimate delivery.
Despite the thrilling finish, not many people were on hand to witness it.
Only a few thousand spectators showed up to watch the match in person at Metricon Stadium, with TV viewers treated to scenes of vastly empty seats around the ground.
According to reports, only one section of the grandstand was open, with about 5000 people crammed into it.
The bizarre scenes sparked some concerns amongst fans just weeks out from the T20 World Cup.
"Where is the crowd in Australia?" the Caribbean Cricket podcast tweeted.
Another fan wrote: "Can't be giving Gold Coast any international sporting fixtures in cricket after this crowd turnout.
"Give it to another deserving city where the crowds will turn out. Reckon there would be barely 3,000 at the ground."
While a third added: "Nothing says the summer of international cricket is here like playing a midweek T20 against the Windies in front of a crowd of 37 on the Gold Coast."
Others described it as 'horrible' and 'shocking to see'.
— Blake Edwards (@BlakeEdwards77) October 5, 2022
The Gold Coast is a dead spot for sport. Throw in the very little promotion to stick the boot in and this is your result.
— Daniel Beswick (@DGBeswick1) October 5, 2022
I’m like an hour and a bit away from the Gold Coast in Brisbane and I didn’t even know the game was on until this morning 🤦🏻♀️ there’s been no ads that I’ve seen.
— Sarah Krause (@sar_krause) October 5, 2022
Can't be giving Gold Coast any international sporting fixtures in cricket after this crowd turnout. Give it to another deserving city where the crowds will turn out. Reckon there would be barely 3,000 at the ground #AUSvWI
— David Tran ↗️ (@ExchangeStatMan) October 5, 2022
Absolute joke of a crowd in. Reckon there’s more players and support staff in the ground than actual fans 😂#AUSvWI
— Umar (@WhyAlwaysUmar) October 5, 2022
Anyone wondering why people dont turn up to events on the GC, look at where they make the crowd sit for an international. Any danger people could sit in the top tier behind the wicket. Pathetic. #AUSvWI
— Outside Five (@OutsideFive) October 5, 2022
Nothing says the summer of international cricket is here like playing a midweek T20 against the Windies in front of a crowd of 37 on the Gold Coast. #ausvwi
— Bert Handsome (@_BertHandsome) October 5, 2022
Even big bash games will have some decent crowd, shocking to see empty stadium in Australian summer #AUSvWI
— Luke (@gerrardchennai) October 5, 2022
— CricBlog ✍ (@cric_blog) October 5, 2022
Two men and a dog at Metricon tonight. Fast coming to the conclusion to ditch international T20s and just leave that format for franchise cricket. Keep ODIs and Tests for international matches. Crowd numbers are telling. Tonight's not just a one-off. #AUSvWI
— LachlanB_ 🌏✈️🏈🏏 (@LachlanB_) October 5, 2022
Aaron Finch stars after dropping down batting order
Australia captain Aaron Finch (58 off 53 balls) had pushed himself down the order to No.4 to give all-rounder Cameron Green a crack at opening the innings where he had been so successful on the recent T20 tour of India.
But chasing the West Indies' total of 9-145, Australia were in dire trouble at 5-58 in just the eighth over.
But Finch found a willing ally in Wade, with the duo combining for a 69-run sixth-wicket stand against the gallant visitors.
Australian paceman Pat Cummins said the side "bowled really well but probably weren't as clinical as we would have liked with the bat."
"I think it is great that someone like Matty Wade at No.7 has got us home like he has quite a few times but ideally those kind of chases you do a bit easier," he said.
"(Wade) has really just really taken that mantle as a finisher. He's nailed that spot.
"I thought (Finch) was fantastic with that old, wise head and just got the job done. Green batted really well in India... and I wouldn't be surprised if you see a couple of combinations heading into the World Cup."
Finch had said pre-match that he didn't think Green would be a late inclusion in the already-named squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup, but his own move down the order won't stop that speculation.
Finch was at the crease early after David Warner and Mitch Marsh departed in Cottrell's opening over.
The Australian skipper had spoken of his desire for his team to be over-aggressive rather than cautious in their approach. He said it was "high risk, high reward".
West Indies leg-spinner Yannic Cariah (1-15 off four) was superb on debut, while paceman Alzarri Joseph (2-17 off four) said the performance of the side was heartening.
"Everyone is in a good head space and confident with the way we have been preparing. We really pushed Australia," he said.
Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.