Bleats

The Matildas Explain Why Hosting The 2023 World Cup Is A Big Deal For Girls

"We put in as much hard work as our male counterparts."

In the wee hours of tomorrow morning, Australian women’s national soccer team, the Matildas will find out whether the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup will be held on their home soil and across the Tasman in New Zealand, or not. 

It’s an edge-of-your-seat moment not only for the Matildas, but for Aussie sport fans and female athletes all over the country.

We spoke to Matildas players Kyah Simon and Ellie Carpenter on the latest episode of It’s Been A Big Day For…about this groundbreaking decision, and what it would mean for sport in our country. LISTEN BELOW:

“It’s the biggest tournament in women’s football – it’s the pinnacle event,” Carpenter said. ”I really think everyone would want to come to Australia and New Zealand for a World Cup. They’re two beautiful countries.” 

It’s a high-pressure moment for the team, but Simon explains, “each player holds themselves accountable and has their own personal goals and expectations that they want to achieve.” 

Despite the undeniable passion and drive of these players, there are still struggles when it comes to competing in a mostly male-dominated sport. “There’s a myth that we don’t deserve to be out there or playing the sport,” Simon said. “In the last few years, we’ve proven that we have as much talent in us, and we put in as much hard work as our male counterparts. That’s where the pay parity and equality conversation comes into it.”

It’s no surprise Simon brings up equal pay. Last November, Football Federation Australia and Professional Footballers Australia came to a landmark agreement that would close the pay gap between the Socceroos and the Matildas, and signal a push for more gender equality across the sport. 

“Seeing it progress from when I first started playing professionally 12 years ago, a lot of us were playing in the women’s league for free,” Simon recalls. “That was the slogan of women’s sport – ‘play for the love of the game’. In the last four to five years, the public recognition has obviously increased with media, sponsorships, and more dollars going into the game. It’s really rewarding.”

As for the future of women’s football in Australia, Simon and Carpenter both agree it needs to start with the youth. 

“If we have younger kids playing the game at a grassroots level, then the quality is going to filter through up to the highest level – that’s the key,” Simon said. “Now, we are in a position where we play a professional sport full-time, instead of having to have a 9-5 job off the field and still try to perform as best as you can.”

“A young girl can aspire to be a Matilda and not have to worry about paying the bills and holding down another job. Credit to a lot of people who have paved the way before us,” she added.

“If we get this World Cup gig and a young girl comes to watch us play on a world stage, that’s going to inspire them to be on the field,” Carpenter said. ”I remember watching a Matildas game when I was seven or eight years old and saying ‘I want to be on that field’ – imagine having that, all the different teams and countries that are coming, seeing so many professional female footballers right in front of you.” 

No matter what decision is made about the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, one thing is certain, the future for the Matildas, and women’s sport in Australia is looking very bright. 

Always be in the loop with our snackable podcast breaking the biggest story of the day. Subscribe to It’s Been A Big Day For… on your favourite podcast app.

How To Replicate An IRL Prison Escape, According To Actor Daniel Webber

“What is extraordinary, is the creativity."

If you’re a fan of true crime, there’s a good chance you’re just as fascinated by prison escapes. Whether the stories of escape are successful or not, there’s something about the lengths humans will go to seek freedom that boggles the mind.

One of the most famous prison escapes in history is that of three South African men who escaped from Pretoria Central Prison in 1979 after meticulous planning. It’s an incredible story that plays out in the recent film Escape From Pretoria starring Australian actor Daniel Webber and Daniel Radcliffe as Stephen Lee and Tim Jenkin. 

We spoke to Daniel Webber on the most recent episode of It’s Been A Big Day For… about what it’s like replicating a real-life prison escape for the big screen. LISTEN BELOW:

One of the most impressive aspects of Escape from Pretoria, is the film’s inclusion of elements from the actual 1979 prison escape, like the chisel that was used by Lee and Jenkin.

“The small details like the chisel, helped fuel us and give energy to the performances,” Webber explained. “When you’re using the chisel that was used in the final escape attempt – knowing what it did and how they used it, you handle it differently, knowing you’re part of history in telling that story.”

“Historical accuracy in a story like this is absolutely essential,” Webber said. “You know it’s going to be viewed through the lens of history and what was actually happening at the time.”

“On top of that, it’s a real person and they’re going to be watching their life portrayed up on screen. You really want to do them justice as much as you can.”

Speaking about working with Daniel Radcliffe, Webber said they developed a natural comradery before shooting even began. “Stephen and Tim were really good mates – they met during university, had to learn about aparteid and what was going on in South Africa,” Webber explained. “It was a similar experience for me and Dan [Radcliffe], we both had to study aparteid and we bonded in that.”

“The nature of filming, trying to figure out problems, is essentially what Stephen and Tim were trying to do on a daily basis in their attempts to escape prison,” he added.

As for why he thinks people are so fascinated by prison escapes, Webber puts it down to being taken “back to basics.”

“What is extraordinary, is the creativity you see that comes from human beings in a hard situation,” he said.

Webber is no stranger to portraying real-life characters. As well as Stephen Lee, he has also played Motley Crue singer Vince Neil in The Dirt, Lee Harvey Oswald in 11.22.63. 

Credit: Hulu/Netflix

“For Vince Neil I was singing for months prior to shooting, we practiced performing – there’s very specific skill sets. With Stephen – because I aligned with his values and morals, it wasn’t about trying to reach for what he believed, but how far he went with it. He was a man willing to give up his freedom, and life if need be.” 

You can rent Escape from Pretoria now from Apple TV, Fetch, Foxtel or Google Play.

Always be in the loop with our snackable podcast breaking the biggest story of the day. Subscribe to It’s Been A Big Day For… on your favourite podcast app.

Euro Summer Might Be Cancelled, But You Can Still Feast On Plane Food

If that's your thing.

Sadly, the global pandemic has pulled the pin on many of our overseas travel plans and most recently, Euro summer – which would’ve seen thousands of Aussies flock to the Instagram-worthy islands of Greece and Italy from this month onwards. However, it’s not all bad news. If you can’t get rid of your travel bug, and you’re craving that mid-flight feeling – you can still feast on plane food for less than your morning coffee.

According to News.com.au, with countless flights grounded until travel restrictions lift, airlines are offering frozen packaged plane meals to the public for as little as $2 per dish.

It’s all part of an initiative from Gate Gourmet, one of the world’s largest in-flight catering companies who provides meals to Virgin Australia and a bunch of international airlines flying into Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

Gate Gourmet’s official website offers pick up of vegetarian and non-vegetarian microwave-ready meal packs that cost between $20 and $40. The mixed lunch/dinner pack features a decent-looking lasagne, curry, noodles and more, while the breakie pack contains scrambled eggs, mushrooms, potato and spinach. 

Credit: Gate Gourmet

Interestingly, there is a warning that the food might taste different to what you’d expect 30,000 feet in the air. Apparently, high altitudes actually dull the taste buds, so extra salt and umami taste is added for flavour. 

Credit: Gate Gourmet

It’s a great way to get rid of the unused food, but plane food can be quite divisive. Not everyone likes their meat and three veg packaged and presented and perfect cubes with a mysterious-looking brown sauce. Plus, Gate Gourmet’s meal packs won’t come with the bread rolls or cheese and crackers that get thrown in mid-flight.

Speaking of food amidst the pandemic, hear about our iso baking habits below:

The offer of plane food isn’t the only way folks have been curing their itchy feet. Back in April, when the pandemic was first upon us, Kirsty Russell and her family went to the effort of recreating their entire 15-hour flight to Germany – from home. 

The Russells mimicked everything from the plane seating to the tickets and even the security check-in process. 

It’s a lot of effort to feel like that dream overseas holiday is still a reality, but you know what they say about desperate times and desperate measures.

Always be in the loop with our snackable podcast breaking the biggest story of the day. Subscribe to It’s Been A Big Day For… on your favourite podcast app.

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