x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 July 2017

Home that is beyond its years

From Miami Dolphins play-off victories to Florida Marlins World Series championships, Land Shark Stadium has been the home to the greatest sports experiences of my life.

I was eight in 1987 when Land Shark Stadium was built. I can still remember walking into my first game and thinking to myself, "this has to be the largest building in the world!" Although it is not by far, that is how majestic it seemed to me at the time. Built in full-view from the interstate, I can say I have not driven by it once without smiling inside. From Miami Dolphins play-off victories to Florida Marlins World Series championships, Land Shark Stadium has been the home to the greatest sports experiences of my life.

There is just something about the place that makes a grown man feel like a child again. The electricity in anticipation of the kick-off is unlike anything else I have experienced. It is the only place I have been where 80,000 people can be quiet enough to hear a pin drop, yet loud enough to make your ears pop, all in the course of one play. I think my favourite part of going to Land Shark Stadium is looking up at the "Ring of Honor" - the names of the franchise's best players circling the stadium's midsection.

Dan Marino alone stretches a section, surrounded by his record-breaking statistics. It is a constant reminder of this team's tradition, and a tribute to players that represented the franchise in a legendary way. The most memorable part of the stadium experience, ironically, may be the walk out of the stadium after the game. A winding road takes you from the highest seats to the ground level. After a victory, chants of "Super Bowl, Super Bowl" are the norm. Walking that road after a victory feels like the last day of school - your feet don't touch the ground.

Land Shark Stadium is only 20 odd years old, but for a man my age, that is nearly forever. The place is home away from home. Yousefi contributes to ThePhinsider.com