Photo Credit: Cricket Australia
The Melbourne Cricket Club (MCC) has entered a three-year partnership with Cricket Australia (CA) to support the National Indigenous Cricket Championships (NICC) and CA’s national Indigenous teams.
Under the new agreement, the MCC Foundation will be an official Inclusion Partner of the NICC and host training camps for Indigenous players at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. The MCC will also stage T20 games on the MCG for both men’s and women’s Indigenous players against local opposition.
The National Indigenous Cricket Championships will return to the cricket calendar in Alice Springs from February 22 – February 28, 2023, after a two-year absence due to COVID-19.
The NICC will again bring together some of the most talented Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander players from across Australia with seven men’s and five women’s teams competing for national titles in the T20 format.
James Allsopp, Cricket Australia’s Executive General Manager Community Cricket and Capability said:
“We’re excited the MCC has chosen to join us in supporting the National Indigenous Cricket Championships and by providing first class training and playing facilities for Indigenous players,” he said.
“We want to give talented Indigenous cricketers the best possible opportunity to fulfil their potential and the experiences made available by the MCC Foundation will be amazing.
“We are confident the performances of outstanding players such as Ashleigh Gardner and Scott Boland along with the pathways we are creating will inspire more Aboriginal and Torres Strait islanders to play our game.
“This partnership with the MCC Foundation is another way Australian Cricket is pursuing our long-held objective to make cricket a Sport for All.”
Sally Macindoe, Vice President of the Melbourne Cricket Club said:
“The MCC Foundation is extremely proud to have joined forces with Cricket Australia to help deliver the National Indigenous Cricket Championships,” she said.
“The MCC is delighted to support these championships as it fosters diverse and broader sporting pathways at both community and elite level – the NICC is a true celebration of cricket, culture and connection.
“This partnership will not only provide greater opportunities in a sporting sense for some of Australia’s most promising and passionate men’s and women’s cricketers from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander background but will also help strengthen relationships between these athletes.
“Cricket Australia share the MCC Foundation’s core value of creating a more inclusive environment for everyone and we look forward to seeing this partnership grow.”
Justin Mohamed, Co-Chair, National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cricket Advisory Committee said:
“Increasing opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to thrive in elite cricket is an important element of Cricket Australia’s Reconciliation Action Plan,” he said.
“I am pleased to see that the partnership between CA and the MCC Foundation will deliver on this, building on the return of the Championships in 2023 and the national men’s and women’s teams’ tour of Vanuatu next year.
“Each will provide the players with a clear pathway to develop their cricket, building on the strong legacy that Aboriginal and Torres Islander people have established within Australia cricket going back to 1868.”