Fly the flag for Victoria, a sports mad state that holds its own on the national sporting stakes, with sporting representatives topping the tables of both domestic and international competitions.
Aussie Rules in Victoria: football
Grab your chance to take in a game of Australian Rules football, whether it's local sides going at it in the country leagues or the spectacle of a sold-out MCG blockbuster match. You can even see AFL games at Kardinia Park in Geelong. The rules may baffle you, but the parochialism and passion of the crowds are infectious.
Summertime sports: cricket, tennis and hockey
Spend summer Saturdays taking classic catches at regional cricket grounds. The Victorian Bushrangers have a well-stocked trophy collection, and the Australian team rolls into town for the Boxing Day test match, one-day internationals and Twenty 20 carnivals.
Victoria hosts the 34th Hockey Champions Trophy in 2012. See the the world's best men's hockey teams compete in Melbourne.
Don't miss the annual Australian Open tennis and accompanying festivities in Melbourne.
Round ball reigns: soccer, rugby, basketball and netball
Melbourne Victory was an early powerhouse of the national A-League soccer competition, with cross-town rivals Melbourne Heart also capturing the public's imagination at both Etihad and AAMI stadiums.
Melbourne Storm entered the National Rugby League with a bang. Victorians have put their support behind the Melbourne Rebels in the international Super Rugby (union) competition.
Melbourne Tigers give basketball fans something to cheer about year in, year out from their home at the State Netball Hockey Centre. Melbourne Vixens take on their netballing rivals from both sides of the Tasman in the ANZ Championship.
Revving up and cheering trackside: motor and horse racing
Keep the motors running after the Australian Formula 1™ Grand Prix has left town, and race along for road racing, drag racing and speedway at Calder Park, Avalon Raceway and Sandown International Motor Raceway. Make sure you're at Phillip Island when the V8 Supercar Championship, Superbike World Championship and the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix roar into town.
Keep the fancy frocks and headwear out after Melbourne's heady Spring Racing Carnival, and head off to the country races. Ballarat, Moe and Hanging Rock are all highlights, with race meets taking place year-round.
Do it yourself
Be inspired by the exploits of elite athletes and get outdoors to make the most of the state's superb sporting facilities, often set amid stunningly dramatic natural scenery.