Happy Birthday, CommBank Stadium. It’s four years today since CommBank Stadium opened its doors to the community.
In that four years, the Stadium has quickly become part of the sporting and social fabric of booming Western Sydney.
In coming weeks, CommBank Stadium will welcome its 2 millionth fan through the gates, with 1,943,297 fans having so far turned out for 180 ticketed sport and entertainment events at the Stadium.
Another 100,000-plus people have attended the Stadium for business, community, charity and cultural events, with the Stadium hosting scores of off-field events each week in the venue’s function rooms.
Nicknamed PARRAdise for Parramatta Eels home games and Wanderland whenever the Western Sydney Wanderers play at home, CommBank Stadium regularly hosts NRL and NRLW, A-Leagues Men & Women’s games, Rugby Test matches and Rugby Sevens internationals, Socceroos and Matildas football internationals. It has hosted the Sydney SuperFight boxing event featuring Tim Tszyu, plus a number of community sporting events.
Built “For The Fans”, the 30,000-seat CommBank Stadium at North Parramatta (generically named Western Sydney Stadium) features the steepest grandstands in the country and offers a unique game-day experience, with fans closer to the action than ever before.
More than 30,000 fans turned out on Sunday 14 April, 2019 for a Community Open Day, which doubled as a test event for the Stadium.
Parramatta Eels Members and supporters will never forget their team’s first game on the hallowed turf on Easter Monday, eight days later. Cheered on by a capacity crowd of 29,047, the Eels thrashed Western Sydney rivals Wests Tigers 51-6, with halfback Mitchell Moses – who grew up close to the Stadium – creating history by scoring the first try and kicking the first goal and field goal at the new Stadium, built on a historic sporting precinct at Parramatta.
The highest attendance to date at CommBank Stadium was the 29,372 posted for the Eels’ stunning Finals win over the Brisbane Broncos on 15 September 2019, with the Eels triumphant 58-0.
The Western Sydney Wanderers’ first game was against famous touring English club Leeds United on 20 July, 2019, with the game going down to the wire before Leeds snuck home in injury time.
The Wanderers set a football crowd benchmark on 26 October 2019 when 28,519 turned out for the Sydney Derby against arch-rivals Sydney FC, the Wanderers winning 1-0 thanks to a Mitch Duke special.
The Stadium has welcomed Australian rock legends Cold Chisel and Hoodoo Gurus and global superstar Sir Elton John, hosted stunning black-tie functions including charity partner Ronald McDonald House Greater Western Sydney’s 40th anniversary event, and even hosted a successful Drive-In movie theatre and a hugely popular Pixar Putt mini golf course in the precinct.
CommBank Stadium played a central role for Sydney during the global pandemic, hosting numerous NRL and A-League events in a controlled environment, and it was the first stadium in NSW to host events after the 100-days lockdown in 2021.
Last December, the Stadium hosted Western Sydney’s Long Lunch to kick-start Sydney’s summer of events. It featured a menu designed by Australian food icon Matt Moran, CommBank Stadium’s Culinary Ambassador, as well as superstar vocal group Human Nature.
A huge 2023 is unfolding at CommBank Stadium as the Wanderers strive for A-League glory and the Eels push for NRL Finals.
The Liberty A-League Women’s Grand Final will be played at CommBank Stadium on Sunday 30 April, and the Isuzu UTE Men’s Grand Final soon after.
On Saturday 15 July, the Wallabies will host Argentina in the only rugby international in Sydney this year.
CommBank Stadium has won 20 different awards across architecture and design, construction and engineering, tourism and leisure, sustainability, operations and function since it opened with a Community Open Day on 14 April 2019.
In 2020, it was the first stadium in the world to be awarded LEED v4 Gold Certification from the US Green Building Council for sustainability.
A City of Parramatta council report in 2019 showed that major events at CommBank Stadium can inject as much as $1 million into the local business community as fans pour into the city pre and post-game.
So it was fitting, perhaps, that CommBank Stadium was this year allocated a place name on the new Parramatta edition of the world’s most famous board game, Monopoly.
Happy Birthday, CommBank Stadium!