Quiet please for football in the library! Blind 5-a-side game kicks off at Paralympics
23:14 GMT, 31 August 2012
Just as an expletive-ridden roar of angst rose up from the Velodrome, there was church-service silence only a few hundred yards away at the Riverbank Arena.
And it came with a twist. Football, like no other sport, is played amid a feverish and often vitriolic atmosphere.
There are derisory chants from away supporters directed at home fans if there is even the hint of quiet.
Quiet please: The blind football teams need silence so they can hear the ball
But if you had sung: 'Is this a library' as the blind 5-a-side football tournament kicked off on Friday it would have acted more like a compliment.
Players require silence in order to hear the roll of the ball, which has metal discs in it, and listen to calls of the sighted goalkeepers and coaches behind the opposition goal.
Sitting amid 5,000 spectators with lips sealed was a peculiar experience but a most enjoyable one.
Each of the four outfield men were to varying degrees blind, wearing white masks to ensure fairness.
True, flowing moves were not a common feature, but when the ball was at a player's feet the dribbling control was immaculate.
Here we go: Team GB Dave Clarke sustained a bloody nose in their game against Spain
Great Britain started their campaign against Spain around the same time Jody Cundy was swearing at the top of his lungs.
Captained by Dave Clarke, who has 126 goals in 139 internationals, with Britain looking to improve on a fifth-place finish in Beijing.
Spain opened the scoring with a penalty but Clarke delivered a response.
The quiet audience let out gasps of awe as the 41-year-old dribbled then shot on the turn to ripple the net.
127 not out. The match finished 1-1, a solid start. I met Clarke at the team's pre-Paralympic camp at Bath University.
He said he can visualise every inch of the pitch and each goal he scores.
He then motioned to a point 500 yards away 'I even know there is a van driving past over there,' he said. It was unnerving. With talent like that, Britain could go far.