Covering Covid-19 in Melbourne Australia

Some of you may have come across my Photo Essay ‘Melbourne under Covid’

Since March 2019 I’ve been covering the Corona Virus crisis here in Melbourne Australia. If I look back the moment it felt like the impact of Covid-19 and its entrance into our lives started around the time of the Australian Grand Prix or more specifically the cancellation of it, any event I was covering up until it’s cancellation.

Melbourne, Australia - March 13 2020: A press conference from Chase Carey, Andrew Westacott, Michael Masi and Paul Little is held following the cancellation of due to Covid 19 the 2020 Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix on the Friday 13th of March . Photo by Asanka Brendon Ratnayake www.abrfoto.com
Melbourne, Australia – March 13 2020: A press conference from Chase Carey, Andrew Westacott, Michael Masi and Paul Little is held following the cancellation of due to Covid 19 the 2020 Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix on the Friday 13th of March . Photo by Asanka Brendon Ratnayake www.abrfoto.com

Since then I’ve documented the closure of businesses, empty streets that followed, innovations and people adapting to the new realities. With every new restriction added a new way of life needed to be introduced. Thankfully compared to the rest of the world the human toll and adverse health impact anticipated by Covid 19 never arrived. On the 15th of May, restrictions were eased in Melbourne.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 30: Medical practioners conducting tests for Covid-19 at a drive through testing facility in a undercover carpark as cars are lined up with drivers awaiting to be tested at the Chadstone Shopping Center on April 30, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. COVID-19 testing is set to expand across Australia as the government looks to ease current lockdown restrictions. Asymptomatic or those with mild symptoms will also be tested to ensure there are no cases missed as Australian health authorities hope to keep confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) cases on the decline.   (Photo by Asanka Ratnayake/Getty Images)
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – APRIL 30: Medical practioners conducting tests for Covid-19 at a drive through testing facility in a undercover carpark as cars are lined up with drivers awaiting to be tested at the Chadstone Shopping Center on April 30, 2020 in Melbourne, Australia. COVID-19 testing is set to expand across Australia as the government looks to ease current lockdown restrictions. Asymptomatic or those with mild symptoms will also be tested to ensure there are no cases missed as Australian health authorities hope to keep confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) cases on the decline. (Photo by Asanka Ratnayake/Getty Images)

As the the impact of the Corona Virus hits Melbourne and our lives change I’ll continue to document and archive the changes and update this Photo Essay, so stayed tuned.

You can view the original photo essay here

Asanka Brendon Ratnayake is a photojournalist and travel photographer based in Melbourne Australia covering Australia, Asia and the Indian subcontinent. Follow him on instagram 

(C) Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Photo Essay : The Castle Hotel calls last drinks

The big multinational swallowing up the local watering hole is a common story all over the modern world, on February 29 in 2016, it was Sri Lanka’s turn. 141 years after its opening, the iconic Castle Hotel and Bar in Colombo, served last drinks.

The colonial building is believed to be over 200 years old and started its life as a printing press. When interviewed by Groundviews.org Hotel manager H.D. Mervyn Wickremesinghe believed the building became the castle hotel in 1875 which catered to international guests. In recent decades, the Castle has become the community bar to the local working-class in the area of Slave Island.

Castle Hotel Slave Island
A customer walks into the castle hotel.  On the 28th of February 2016 the Castle Hotel called last drinks. While the building itself may survive with the likelihood of being turned in into offices the last arrack’s have been served and last songs sung. One of the Colombo’s most iconic drinking spots has been closed.
Street Cricket Colombo
Men playing street cricket outside the Castle Hotel on Slave Island. The Castle hotel which operates primarily as a pub, very basic hotel rooms are also available upstairs. Next door to the Castle Hotel is a large apartment development being conducted by the Tata Group. After the acquisition of land by the Indian multinational conglomerate,  the hotels future has been uncertain.
Castle Hotel Slave Island
A person sits at a table in the foyer as a drunk man lays down passed out inside the Castle hotel entrance.

Of all the bars and pubs in the Sri Lankan capital Colombo there are few that match the character, history and working class realities of the emerging Sri Lanka than this iconic venue.
The colonial grand façade, imposing a Y-Shaped staircase at its foyer entrance, gives insight to the Castle Hotel’s ‘hey day’ which would have catered to foreign guests and troops during the World Wars.

Since then, the upkeep of the hotel has been in a decline and its character and charm representative of its predominantly working-class clientele. Loyal customers from snake charmers, tuk tuk drivers, low level office clerks and ironically, even the labourers working on the site that would eventually see the end of the bar, would be found having a drink at the Castle on most nights.

Monkey tamer and snake charmer
A snake being held by its charmer looks at a Monkey which is sitting on its owners lap as their owners have a drink and socialise inside the Castle Hotel.
Castle Hotel bar counter
Men lining up for drinks at the bar counter drinking at the Castle Hotel.
Castle Hotel Slave Island
Men sitting at a table drinking inside the Castle hotel which operates primarily as a pub or local drinking den, hotel rooms are also available.

The future of the hotel has been uncertain after Indian multinational conglomerate ‘The Tata Group’ purchased the highly valuable land to develop modern offices and apartment complexes. There were talks the hotel would remain in its current form, however, it was always going to be a matter of time before the last drinks would be served.

Beers were cheap, arrack plentiful and short bites, spicy. The resident stray cat would hunt around for scraps on the floor. Like any good pub, stories were shared, grievances voiced and opinions were made known in the presence of complete strangers. Drunks, alcoholics and general louts would be ushered out with some decorum and respect, when they had one too many.

Castle Hotel Slave Island
A man smokes a cigarette as he drinks beer at a table with friends inside the Castle hotel.
The Castle Hotel
Two men share a having a drink inside the Castle Hotel
Castle Hotel Slave Island
A man orders an arrack (local drink) at the counter inside the Castle hotel which operates primarily as a pub but hotel rooms are also available upstairs. Slave Island is home to numerous small houses occupied by some of colombo’s working class, as gentrification & development encroaches land in the now highly valuable slave island is slowly pushing out locals from the area. Slave Island is a suburb in Colombo, Sri Lanka located directly south of the Fort area of Colombo
Castle Hotel Slave Island
A man skols or drinks down a large large bottle of beer as a drunk man wearing a sarong walks past inside the Castle hotel

It recent years, this humble venue gained a reputation online as a ‘dodgy pub’ – though in my experience, you are more likely to find dodgier clientele and shady customers (for lack of better words) in the bars and clubs of Colombo’s 5-star hotels.

The Castle didn’t pretend to be something it wasn’t and it was, by far, more representative of Sri Lanka than the Westernised hotels down the road. Its guests were treated with respect and without the judgement they may experience outside.

As modern Sri Lanka rides the economic wave of a post-war economy, the consequence of gentrification emerges.

At the Castle hotel, what you saw was what you got, it was real and it was gritty, but it was honest.

Castle Hotel Slave Island
An empty room with a disconnected old TV set sits on a table inside the Castle hotel which operates primarily as a pub, hotel rooms are also available.
Castle Hotel Slave Island
A man walks into the main entrance of the Colonial styled Castle Hotel

Words and photography by Asanka Brendon Ratnayake.

Asanka Brendon Ratnayake is a photojournalist and travel photographer based in Melbourne Australia covering Australia, Asia and the indian subcontinent. Follow him on instagram 

(C) Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Reclaim Australia : Melton Protests

A few selects from the Reclaim Australia protests in Melton.

Reclaim Australia Rally Melbourne
Supporters of the Reclaim Australia group shout and hold banners during a protest organised by the far right wing group. Melbourne, Australia November 22 2015.

Reclaim Australia Rally Melbourne
Anti-Fascist counter protestors clash with supporters of the Reclaim Australia group during a protest organised by the far right wing group Reclaim Australia.

Reclaim Australia Rally Melbourne
A member of the Reclaim Australia wearing a balaclava of the Australian flag over his face an during a protest organised by the far right wing group. The Anti-Islamic group protested in the city of Melton on the outskirts of Melbourne voicing their opinions in relation to immigration and the building of Mosques and schools in the country.

Reclaim Australia Rally Melbourne
A man is arrested by police in riot gear during a protest organised by the far right wing group Reclaim Australia. The Anti-Islamic group protested in the city of Melton on the outskirts of Melbourne voicing their opinions in relation to immigration and the building of Mosques and schools in the country.

Reclaim Australia Rally Melbourne
Anti-racism counter protestors push back a line of horses used to seperate opposing groups during a protest organised by the far right wing group Reclaim Australia. The Anti-Islamic group protested in the city of Melton on the outskirts of Melbourne voicing their opinions in relation to immigration and the building of Mosques and schools in the country.

Reclaim Australia Rally Melbourne
Anti-Racism protestors protestors shield for cover as they are pepper sprayed by police after they tried to push through police lines during a protest organised by the far right wing group Reclaim Australia.

Reclaim Australia Rally Melbourne
Two young boys one of whom is riding his bicycle stand in front of police in riot gear during a protest organised by the far right wing group Reclaim Australia.

Reclaim Australia Rally Melbourne
Anti-Fascist counter protestors clash with supporters of the Reclaim Australia group during a protest organised by the far right wing group Reclaim Australia.

Reclaim Australia Rally Melbourne
A supporter of the Reclaim Australia group is pushed back by police officer dressed in riot gear during a protest organised by the far right wing group Reclaim Australia.

Reclaim Australia Rally Melbourne
Supporters of the Reclaim Australia group march down the street waving flags and shouting anti-islamic slogans during a protest organised by the far right wing group.

Clippings : Capture Magazine – 2015 Annual

Every year Australia’s leading magazine for Professional Photographers ‘Capture’ put out their annual edition.
The Annual showcases the best work across by Australian photographers across a number of genres.
This year i managed to get two shots included, one in the Documentary and the other in the Travel section.
Be sure to grab a copy either via the ipad edition or at your local newsagent. So top quality work by a lot of top Australian Photographers.
http://www.capturemag.com.au

Tearsheet of Capture Magazine 2015 Annual  documentary category
Tearsheet of Capture Magazine 2015 Annual
documentary category

Tearsheet of Capture Magazine 2015 Annual Travel category
Tearsheet of Capture Magazine 2015 Annual Travel category

Clippings – Time : Burma’s Million-Strong Rohingya Population Faces ‘Final Stages of Genocide,’ Says Report

Rohingya Refugee Boy Sittwe
A young malnourished Rohingya boy inside the Sittwe IDP camp . An estimated 110,000 ethnic Rohingya live in an overcrowded IDP camp in the outskirts of Sittwe. The Rohingya continually make attempts to flee the camps by fishing boat and seek asylum in neighbouring Islamic countries however often fall victim to human traffickers. At current they are a stateless people believed to be illegal immigrants from Bangladesh. According to the UN the Rohingya are one of the most persecuted minorities in the world. – Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

One of my photographs from the IDP camps in Sittwe was recently picked up for an article in Time.
Whilst getting a photo used by time is something i’m quite happy about, i’m glad that this story is starting to get a bit of traction.
What i witnessed in those camps i can only describe as state sponsored genocide.
This article and Al Jazeera’s expose proves this.

I’d strongly encourage you to read this article in Time

Al Jazeera Investigative Unit expose the inner workings of the Myanmar government, providing “strong evidence” of genocide against the Rohingya minority.

2015 MotoGP of Australia

PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 16 : Marc Marquez (ESP) of Repsol Honda Team during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 16 : Marc Marquez (ESP) of Repsol Honda Team during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.

PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 18 : Yonny Hernandez (COL) of Octo Pramac Racing during the 2015 MotoGP race of Australia at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 18 2015.
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 18 : Yonny Hernandez (COL) of Octo Pramac Racing during the 2015 MotoGP race of Australia at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 18 2015.

PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 16 : Valentino Rossi (ITA) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 16 : Valentino Rossi (ITA) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.

PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 16 : Valentino Rossi (ITA) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 16 : Valentino Rossi (ITA) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.

PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 16 : Jorge Lorenz (ESP) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 16 : Jorge Lorenz (ESP) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.

PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 16 : Valentino Rossi (ITA) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP places his ear plug into his ear while he sits in his garage during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 16 : Valentino Rossi (ITA) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP places his ear plug into his ear while he sits in his garage during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.

PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 16 : Dani Pedrosa (ESP) of Repsol Honda Team during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 16 : Dani Pedrosa (ESP) of Repsol Honda Team during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.

PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 18 : Jorge Lorenz (ESP) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP during the 2015 MotoGP race of Australia at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 18 2015.
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 18 : Jorge Lorenz (ESP) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP during the 2015 MotoGP race of Australia at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 18 2015.

PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 16 : Jorge Lorenz (ESP) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP  during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 16 : Jorge Lorenz (ESP) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP during MotoGP free practice of the 2015 MotoGP of Australia Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 16 2015.

PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 18 : Marc Marquez (ESP) of Repsol Honda Team overtakes Jorge Lorenz (ESP) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP at turn 10 on the final lap to win the 2015 MotoGP race of Australia at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 18 2015.
PHILLIP ISLAND, AUSTRALIA – OCTOBER 18 : Marc Marquez (ESP) of Repsol Honda Team overtakes Jorge Lorenz (ESP) of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP at turn 10 on the final lap to win the 2015 MotoGP race of Australia at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit . Phillip Island, Australia October 18 2015.

2 world champions, 1 wind tunnel & 10 minutes

Recently, Cycling Australia & the Australian Institute of Sport made use of Monash University’s Wind Tunnel facility for aerodynamics testing.

World Champion cyclists Matthew Glaetzer (2012 Team Sprint World Champion) and Anna Meares (4x World Champion & Olympic Gold Medallist) were present to test their carbon fibre track weapons.

As this was a private test session and not a media call, I only had access to shoot each rider for 5 minutes each.

A big thankyou to Monash University, Cycling Australia & the riders for the opportunity.

Australian cyclist Matthew Glaetzer conducts a wind test inside the Monash University Wind Tunnel Facility. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Australian cyclist Matthew Glaetzer conducts a wind test inside the Monash University Wind Tunnel Facility. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

World Champion track cyclist and olympic Gold Medalist Anna Meares conducts a wind test inside the Monash University Wind Tunnel Facility. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
World Champion track cyclist and olympic Gold Medalist Anna Meares conducts a wind test inside the Monash University Wind Tunnel Facility. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Australian cyclist Matthew Glaetzer conducts a wind test inside the Monash University Wind Tunnel Facility. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Australian cyclist Matthew Glaetzer conducts a wind test inside the Monash University Wind Tunnel Facility. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

World Champion track cyclist and olympic Gold Medalist Anna Meares conducts a wind test inside the Monash University Wind Tunnel Facility. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
World Champion track cyclist and olympic Gold Medalist Anna Meares conducts a wind test inside the Monash University Wind Tunnel Facility. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Australian cyclist Matthew Glaetzer conducts a wind test inside the Monash University Wind Tunnel Facility. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Australian cyclist Matthew Glaetzer conducts a wind test inside the Monash University Wind Tunnel Facility. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

ANZAC Day Dawn Service Melbourne 2015

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - APRIL 25 : Soldiers in front of the Shrine during the Anzac Day dawn service at the Melbourne Shrine of Remembrance. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – APRIL 25 : Soldiers in front of the Shrine during the Anzac Day dawn service at the Melbourne Shrine of Remembrance. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - APRIL 25 : An estimated 80 thousand patrons braved cold and wet conditions during the Anzac Day dawn service at the Melbourne Shrine of Remembrance. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – APRIL 25 : An estimated 80 thousand patrons braved cold and wet conditions during the Anzac Day dawn service at the Melbourne Shrine of Remembrance. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - APRIL 25 : Large Crowds walk up towards the Shrine, official estimates that 80 thousand people attended during the Anzac Day dawn service at the Melbourne Shrine of Remembrance. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – APRIL 25 : Large Crowds walk up towards the Shrine, official estimates that 80 thousand people attended during the Anzac Day dawn service at the Melbourne Shrine of Remembrance. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

ANZAC Day Dawn Service Melbourne 2015

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - APRIL 25 : Badges worn by a Army veteran  during the Anzac Day parade. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – APRIL 25 : Badges worn by a Army veteran during the Anzac Day parade. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - APRIL 25 : A carpet made of knitted poppies laid on the road during the Anzac Day parade. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – APRIL 25 : A carpet made of knitted poppies laid on the road during the Anzac Day parade. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - APRIL 25 : Members of the HMAS march towards the Shrine of Remembrance during the Anzac Day parade. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – APRIL 25 : Members of the HMAS march towards the Shrine of Remembrance during the Anzac Day parade. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - APRIL 25 : A soldier holding a riffle in front of the Shrine during the Anzac Day parade. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – APRIL 25 : A soldier holding a riffle in front of the Shrine during the Anzac Day parade. This years Anzac Day marks the centenary of the ANZAC landing by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War at Gallipoli. Melbourne, Victoria Australia on April 25 2015. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

2015 ICC Cricket World Cup

The last Olympics featured 204 nations competing in over 300 events over 19 days; the last Fifa world cup had 32 teams & went for 32 days.

The 2015 Cricket World Cup however, consists of only 14 teams and 49 matches yet it goes on for 49 days….6 weeks!!

To put that into perspective a Pre-Season AFL tournament started & finished during the World Cup.

Some Journalists even went on holiday during the World Cup & came back without missing much.

I still don’t see what justification there is for a major sporting event to go on for so long. As the tournament went on, column inches in the papers shrunk which reflected the interest of the event as a whole. The ICC would argue that this was the most viewed, ‘tweeted’, ‘instagrammed’ & ‘facebooked’ event in the history of the sport. The genius at the ICC who came up with that fact obviously chose to ignore that more people use social media since the last World Cup. It’s like saying “more people travel internationally since the launch of commercial aviation.”

I doubt there would be one person that would argue cricket needs such a long world cup. If the reasoning is logistics & player wellbeing I point to the FIFA world cup; an event which has more teams, more matches & players prone to more fatigue than cricketers, not to mention it’s a much bigger event, yet it goes on for just over 1 month.
How is one-day cricket supposed to sell itself to the masses when a 6 week tournament only has 3 ‘exciting’ matches? One of which featured two countries that are semi-professional at best.

My suggestions are simple; keep the tournament to 14 teams, have the tournament in one country only, ensure every team plays at least twice a week & keep the tournament under 1 month.

I ended up covering 9 matches between Melbourne, Sydney & New Zealand. It was an enjoyable World Cup from a photographer’s point of view; it was great to catch up with colleagues from all over the world, the cricket, whilst not exciting did provide some great images for most photographers. Below are a few of my own selects.

Joe Root of England fields on the boundary in the shadows during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Australia and England at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Joe Root of England fields on the boundary in the shadows during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Australia and England at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

A diving JP Duminy dives in the field to stop the ball during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool B group match between South Africa V India at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
JP Duminy dives in the field to stop the ball during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool B group match between South Africa V India at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Morne Morkel bowls to Ajinkya Rahane during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool B group match between South Africa V India at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Morne Morkel bowls to Ajinkya Rahane during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool B group match between South Africa V India at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Dale Steyn appeals an LBW decision to get the wicket of Ajinkya Rahane during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool B group match between South Africa V India at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Dale Steyn appeals an LBW decision to get the wicket of Ajinkya Rahane during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool B group match between South Africa V India at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Dale Steyn appeals an LBW decision to get the wicket of Ajinkya Rahane during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool B group match between South Africa V India at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Dale Steyn appeals an LBW decision to get the wicket of Ajinkya Rahane during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool B group match between South Africa V India at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Taskin Ahmed looks on as he drops Kumar Sangakkara off his own bowling during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Sri Lanka Vs Bangladesh at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Taskin Ahmed looks on as he drops Kumar Sangakkara off his own bowling during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Sri Lanka Vs Bangladesh at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Kumar Sangakkara plays a cover drive shot while batting during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Sri Lanka Vs Bangladesh at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Kumar Sangakkara plays a lofted cover drive on one knee while batting during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Sri Lanka Vs Bangladesh at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Ian Bell looks up in the sky after being bowled for 49 runs during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between England Vs Sri Lanka at the Wellington Regional Stadium, Wellington, New Zealand. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Ian Bell looks up in the sky after being bowled for 49 runs during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between England Vs Sri Lanka at the Wellington Regional Stadium, Wellington, New Zealand. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

James Taylor dives into his crease to avoid being run out as Angelo Mathews jumps to avoid being run into during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between England Vs Sri Lanka at the Wellington Regional Stadium, Wellington, New Zealand. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
James Taylor dives into his crease to avoid being run out as Angelo Mathews jumps to avoid a collision during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between England Vs Sri Lanka at the Wellington Regional Stadium, Wellington, New Zealand. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Michael Clarke watches the ball as he is about to play a pull shot whilst batting during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Australia Vs Sri Lanka at the SCG. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Michael Clarke watches the ball as he is about to play a pull shot whilst batting during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Australia Vs Sri Lanka at the SCG. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Glenn Maxwell batting during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Australia Vs Sri Lanka at the SCG. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Glenn Maxwell batting during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Australia Vs Sri Lanka at the SCG. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Lasith Malinga runs in to bowl in front of the members stand during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Australia Vs Sri Lanka at the SCG. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Lasith Malinga runs in to bowl in front of the S.C.G members stand during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Australia Vs Sri Lanka at the SCG. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Lasith Malinga bowling during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Australia Vs Sri Lanka at the SCG. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Lasith Malinga bowling during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Pool A group match between Australia Vs Sri Lanka at the SCG. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Mashrafe Mortaza and bowler Taskin Ahmed celebrate by jumping in the air and bumping their chests together after  wicket of Ajinkya Rahane during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Quarter Final knockout match between India Vs Bangladesh at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Mashrafe Mortaza and bowler Taskin Ahmed celebrate by jumping in the air and bumping their chests together after wicket of Ajinkya Rahane during the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup Quarter Final knockout match between India Vs Bangladesh at Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Aaron Finch plays a cut shot in mid air during the ICC Cricket World Cup Semi Final match between Australia & India at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Aaron Finch plays a cut shot in mid air during the ICC Cricket World Cup Semi Final match between Australia & India at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

The Sun sets over the Members stand during the ICC Cricket World Cup Semi Final match between Australia & India at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
The Sun sets over the Members stand during the ICC Cricket World Cup Semi Final match between Australia & India at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Mitchell Johnson jumps in celebration after getting the wicket of Rohit Sharma by bowling him out during the ICC Cricket World Cup Semi Final match between Australia & India at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Mitchell Johnson jumps in celebration after getting the wicket of Rohit Sharma by bowling him out during the ICC Cricket World Cup Semi Final match between Australia & India at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Spectators look on from the grant southern stand at the MCG during the ICC Cricket World Cup Final match between Australia & New Zealand at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Spectators look on from the Great Southern Stand at the MCG during the ICC Cricket World Cup Final match between Australia & New Zealand at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Victorious Australian Captain Michael Clarke raises the trophy in front of photographers & camera men after the Australian won the ICC Cricket World Cup Final match between Australia & New Zealand at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
Victorious Australian Captain Michael Clarke raises the trophy in front of photographers & camera men after the Australian side won the ICC Cricket World Cup Final match between Australia & New Zealand at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Photo Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

Feel free to follow me on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram

2015 Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix Melbourne

I only found out I was covering the Melbourne Formula 1 Grand Prix three days out from the race. Covering my hometown race for the first time (finally) with little preparation I didn’t have much time to get acquainted with that F1 Paddock lifestyle, instead it was early morning starts & very late finishes.

Considering I’ve driven along the track hundreds of times, I still needed to re-familiarise myself with the track & figure the best angles to shoot from & where the sun would hit at certain times. My ‘Home ground advantage’ counted for little when the whole course is basically fenced like a birdcage.
Unashamedly I spent hours on Thursday night going through archives of Melbourne f1 photos, looking to see what works & what doesn’t. Even though Formula 1 isn’t a sport I specialise in I’m always looking at the work of f1 photographers as inspiration for my own work. Their composition & use of available light is unique when compared to most sports & a lot can be learnt from their work.

Below are a few of my selects from the weekend, now it’s back to covering this never ending Cricket World Cup.

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 12 : Nico Rosberg (DEU) #6 from the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team  during the Driver Portrait photo session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 12 : Nico Rosberg (DEU) #6 from the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team during the Driver Portrait photo session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 12 : Jenson Button (GBR) #22 from the McLaren Honda team during the Driver Portrait photo session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 12 : Jenson Button (GBR) #22 from the McLaren Honda team during the Driver Portrait photo session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 12 : Lewis Hamilton (GBR) #44 from the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team  during the Driver Portrait photo session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 12 : Lewis Hamilton (GBR) #44 from the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team during the Driver Portrait photo session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 13 : Sebastian Vettel (DEU) #5 from the Scuderia Ferrari team during the Friday Practice session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 13 : Sebastian Vettel (DEU) #5 from the Scuderia Ferrari team during the Friday Practice session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15 : Felipe Massa (BRA) #19 from the Williams Martini Racing team during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15 : Felipe Massa (BRA) #19 from the Williams Martini Racing team during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15 : Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) #3 from the Infiniti Red Bull Racing team during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15 : Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) #3 from the Infiniti Red Bull Racing team during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 13 : Nico Rosberg (DEU) #6 from the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team  during the Friday Practice session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 13 : Nico Rosberg (DEU) #6 from the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team during the Friday Practice session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 13 : Sergio Perez (MEX) #11 from the Sahara Force India F1 Team during the Friday Practice session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 13 : Sergio Perez (MEX) #11 from the Sahara Force India F1 Team during the Friday Practice session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 13 : Sebastian Vettel (DEU) #5 from the Scuderia Ferrari team during the Friday Practice session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 13 : Sebastian Vettel (DEU) #5 from the Scuderia Ferrari team during the Friday Practice session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15 : Nico Rosberg (DEU) #6 from the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team  during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15 : Nico Rosberg (DEU) #6 from the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 13 : Valtteri Bottas (FIN) #77 from the Williams Martini Racing team during the Friday Practice session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 13 : Valtteri Bottas (FIN) #77 from the Williams Martini Racing team during the Friday Practice session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 12 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15 : Sparks fly out of  Daniel Ricciardo's Red Bull as Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) #7 from the Scuderia Ferrari team approach turn 3  during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15 : Sparks fly out of Daniel Ricciardo’s Red Bull as Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) #7 from the Scuderia Ferrari team approach turn 3 during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15 : Lewis Hamilton (GBR) #44 from the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team  during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15 : Lewis Hamilton (GBR) #44 from the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15 : Red Bull driver Daniel Riccardo enters the first corner on lap 1 during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15 : Red Bull driver Daniel Riccardo enters the first corner on lap 1 during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15 : Jenson Button (GBR) #22 from the McLaren Honda team during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15 : Jenson Button (GBR) #22 from the McLaren Honda team during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 14 : Romain Grosjean (FRA) #8 from the Lotus F1 Team during the Saturday Free Practice 3 session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 14 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 14 : Romain Grosjean (FRA) #8 from the Lotus F1 Team during the Saturday Free Practice 3 session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 14 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 14 : Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) #3 from the Infiniti Red Bull Racing team during the Qualifying session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 14 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 14 : Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) #3 from the Infiniti Red Bull Racing team during the Qualifying session at the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 14 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15 : 2nd Place driver Nico Rosberg shakes hands with 3rd place Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15 : 2nd Place driver Nico Rosberg shakes hands with 3rd place Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15 : 1st Place Lewis Hamilton Sprays champagne on the podim at the conclusion of the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15 : 1st Place Lewis Hamilton Sprays champagne on the podim at the conclusion of the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake

MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15 : Lewis Hamilton and movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger shouts 'I'll Be Back" during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake
MELBOURNE , AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15 : Lewis Hamilton and movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger shouts ‘I’ll Be Back” during the Rolex Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix race, Albert Park, Melbourne, Victoria Australia on March 15 2015. Asanka Brendon Ratnayake