Sports broadcasting legend Murray Deaker cleared his diary, the moment he found out that New Zealand would feature in the Boxing Day cricket test.
And one of his reasons is quite simple: the wish to see revenge for a scurrilous act committed by the Aussies over 30 years ago.
As for thousands of other sports fans, the test in Melbourne holds a special magic for 'Dekes'.
It is estimated that up to 16,000 Kiwis will head over the ditch next week to watch the contest at the MCG and none will be keener to get there than Deaker.
For the 74-year-old, who was king of the sports airwaves for many years before retiring in 2013, a return to Melbourne is special because of one man: Kiwi cricket fast bowling superstar Sir Richard Hadlee.
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In 1987, the last time New Zealand figured in the prestigious Boxing Day match, Deaker - a fledgling media figure at that point - was sent to the game by the Auckland Sun to interview Jeff Crowe. Teacher Deaker had mentored Kiwi captain Crowe at Auckland Grammar.
Deaker was early to breakfast on the morning of the fifth day when he saw a figure approaching slowly while clinging to a banister. It was Hadlee, a tough year and test match rigours having taken a heavy toll.
Hours later, with Australia chasing 247 for victory, Hadlee turned in yet another great performance bowling a staggering 31 overs and taking five wickets for 67, his victims including the Aussie captain Allan Border.
"I asked him that morning what was wrong and he said 'I can hardly walk' although he didn't go into it more than that," recalls Deaker.
"His body was stuffed. The courage he showed – he hid it. All these years later I still shake my head in disbelief at what he did that day."
It's not the only thing which had cricket fanatic Deaker shaking his head as both sides chased victory.
A close Deaker protégé was another Kiwi fast bowler Danny Morrison whose plum lbw call to give New Zealand victory was turned down by Aussie umpire Dick French in one of test cricket's most infamous decisions. Australia clung on for seven more balls, and the draw gave them a series win.
Deaker believes a win at all costs attitude in Australian cricket played its part.
"I admire their players' skill but I've disliked Australian cricket ever since," he says.
"I don't think it has ever been a level playing field over there. Aussies don't care about rugby, but they can't bear the thought of us beating them at cricket.
"Revenge is a huge reason why I'm so keen to go over for this match.
"I don't get too excited about anything anymore but that decision has festered with me for all of those years. We were wronged in that game.
"Things were always stacked against us and close decisions never went in our favour. But that decision wasn't even close - it's the worst I've ever seen. French never umpired another test which says something."
Neutral umpires and technology have alleviated those sorts of problems, but he sees the same attitude prevailing in the way the current side was "ambushed" in Perth where they were thrust into unfamiliar conditions and a day-night test with no lead-up game.
New Zealand Cricket does a brilliant job but it should have fought harder for a better itinerary, he says.
Hadlee's performance those 32 years ago ranks among Deaker's three favourite sports attendance memories, next to Nelson Mandela's 1995 Rugby World Cup final appearance and All Black captain Richie McCaw's leadership – broken foot and all – in the final stages of the 2011 World Cup decider at Eden Park.
But it's not just memory lane and a hope for cricketing revenge which is drawing him to a special occasion in Melbourne, where New Zealand will figure in just its fourth Boxing Day clash.
His admiration for captain Kane Williamson's batting skill and humble, intelligent leadership knows no bounds.
"I love this New Zealand cricket team - I've got a huge regard for them and especially Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor," he says.
"If this is not the best New Zealand side it is the second best. Their record is the best we've had.
"I've met so many people who are going over for this game. And this team will bounce back."