It's time for Hobart bottoms to put up or shut up.
After years of producing plenty of hot air, Southern posteriors need to start speaking with their cheeks.
In both football and cricket, Tasmanian sporting aspirations are being choked by an unpleasant cloud and it doesn't take much sniffing to identify which region dealt it.
As average AFL crowds in the capital plunge to an all-time low, similar concerns in cricketing circles have seen Alice Springs emerge as a more attractive venue than Hobart.
By this stage, anybody south of Oatlands will have already dismissed this column as parochial whinging - the default reaction to any suggestion that sporting crowds are more dependable at the opposite end of the state.
But consider the evidence.
That's the average. The lowest was 7832 - which, alarmingly, is still not the venue's lowest ever having sunk as low as 7194 last year.
In 21 AFL games in Hobart, attendances have dipped below 9000 three times.
In 72 matches in Launceston, that has never happened.
Since beginning to play home games at Bellerive in 2012, North Melbourne's average crowd figure rose from 12,620 to 14,634 in 2015 and peaked at 15,649 in 2016.
Then it fell off a cliff of Tasman Peninsula proportions.
In the three seasons since, it has been below 11,000, plunging to this year's record low.
This is despite seemingly appealing opponents.
Twice the venue has failed to break the 11,000-mark for a Melbourne derby with St Kilda - historically one of the best supported teams in Tasmania.
Every third game has been a Melbourne derby, against four different opponents.
It has also never had the thankless task of hosting Gold Coast - proud holders of Hawthorn's two lowest attendances in Launceston - 10,121 in 2016 and 9007 last year, which remains UTAS Stadium's only four-figure AFL crowd.
Just 31,327 attended this season's Bellerive Oval fixtures against Sydney, GWS and St Kilda, producing the average of 10,442.
It's not as if either Tasmanian tenant is outperforming the other, the pair being locked together on 32 points and separated only by 1.2 per cent.
Hawthorn's Launceston average crowd figure this season even topped those from its flag years of 2013-15.
It is a similar story in cricket.
Remember how bitterly Hobart sport followers complained about Launceston being handed first one and then two Big Bash League fixtures?
"Isn't the team supposed to be the Hobart Hurricanes?" was the general theme.
However, in both seasons since the team's fixtures have been shared around the state, "Hobart's" biggest attendance has been in Launceston.
Last season, as the Hurricanes blew away all before them in a dominant campaign, Bellerive averaged 10,417 from games against the Stars (9132), Thunder (10,478), Sixers (12,920), Heat (11,320) and Renegades (8235).
Launceston's two crowds of 12,455 (Scorchers) and 13,836 (Strikers) both exceeded the subsequent 12,404 attracted to Bellerive for the semi-final loss to the Stars.
All of which figures are a shadow of the 16,734 supporters present when UTAS Stadium hosted its maiden BBL fixture in December 2017 - the first to played outside a capital city.
"Isn't the team supposed to be the Hobart Hurricanes?"
So alarming have been the Hobart BBL crowd sizes that Cricket Tasmania has taken the radical step of selling one of the city's five fixtures in next summer's tournament to the Northern Territory.
In comparison to the tidal wave of outraged protests when games were transferred 200 kilometres north, there was but a ripple when one was dispatched 3000km away.
CT chief executive Nick Cummins said all the right things about the financial benefits from the deal and the chance to "celebrate Tasmanian Indigenous culture" but seemed to admit it was prompted by concerning crowd trends when he added: "Fans are effectively choosing which games they go to rather than going to more games."
The lost BBL fixture came after Bellerive had again been dudded by another dreadful international schedule.
With no likelihood of a Test in the foreseeable future, Tasmania has zero games in next year's women's Twenty20 World Cup and the same number of Australia games in the men's equivalent while the state's solitary One Day International clashes with the opening round of the AFL season.
But with uncannily similar average crowds of 10,442 for footy and 10,417 for cricket, the capital is hardly presenting a compelling case for greater elite sporting content.
No wonder the Southern Huskies opted to play more games in Launceston than Hobart in their maiden NZ NBL season and the latest push for Australian NBL involvement is stressing the importance of including games in the North and also the basketball hotbed of the North-West.
It may require an act of impressive contortionism, but Hobart bottoms really need to take a long, hard look at themselves.
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