There were cheers and jeers and even a live feed of the main event, but this was no sporting fixture, this was the scene on the sidelines of George Pell's court sentencing.
Outside Melbourne's County Court on Wednesday child abuse survivors and journalists gathered in droves, filling the footpath with cameras and placards as they eagerly waited to hear the cardinal's fate.
One of the TV networks set up a small screen showing a live broadcast of Chief Judge Peter Kidd's lengthy commentary, a TV first, which was beamed around the globe.
"You have had to endure protests and verbal abuse whenever you were seen arriving or departing from court," Judge Kidd told Pell.
The 77-year-old has already spent a fortnight in custody so avoided the public heckling on Wednesday.
A truck rolled by the court, tooting its horn at the outside gathering. A man yelled "long live the Catholic church".
When Judge Kidd announced Pell would serve at least three years and eight months in jail, the reactions on the ground were mixed.
An abuse survivor known as Michael Advocate scoffed and stormed off, later returning to call the sentence "pathetic" in its leniency.
Elsewhere there were cheers, smiles and a "hip-hip hooray" for Victoria Police because Pell had been brought to justice.
Among them was state upper house MP Fiona Patten, who called the sentence "disappointing" but said it provided hope.
"There will be many survivors who are desperately disappointed today," she said.
"But we heard boos and cheers. And I think just the fact that Pell has been brought to justice will be a tipping point in how the church responds to child sexual abuse."
Leonie Sheedy from victims support group CLAN believed justice had been served.
"There's never enough time for a pedophile to be sent to prison," she said.
"But never underestimate that you're stripped of all your dignity."
Pell's high-profile barrister Robert Richter QC was shepherded out of court by police, offering only "no comment" as cameras hustled around him.
With Pell in custody, the anger of protesters has at times been directed at his barrister, and it was no different on Wednesday.
"How can you sleep at night?" one woman yelled.
Moments earlier, the frail, ailing Pell stood emotionless in the dock of the crowded courtroom, awaiting his fate for sexually assaulting two choirboys in the 1990s.
He was not wearing his clerical collar as he always had before, or his golden ring. He appeared thinner than a fortnight ago.
The image was satisfying to Ms Sheedy.
"Did you notice he didn't have his collar on?" she said.
"He didn't have those trappings of wealth and prestige. He's stripped down to looking like Mr George Pell."