Photo Credit: Perth Scorchers
The Perth Scorchers are excited to announce the launch of their inaugural Pride match in the KFC Big Bash League, becoming the first professional men’s sports team to do so in Western Australia.
The world-class Optus Stadium will turn rainbow tomorrow, Wednesday 4 January, when the Scorchers hold their first ever MBBL Pride match against Sydney Thunder.
Players will celebrate the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA+) community and champion their inclusion in the Perth Scorchers family by wearing rainbow colours in the form of hat pins, multi-coloured shoelaces, sweat bands and socks that have been tie-dyed.
The Pride message will extend into the crowd with a pre-match Pride activation featuring table cricket, inflatables, bowling machine, catching competitions and face painting on the Southern Oval.
The match will also include music, a multi-coloured pyro and light show, while DJ Leask will perform to help spread the message that cricket is a sport for all.
The Scorchers hosted their first ever WBBL Pride match in October at the WACA Ground, becoming just the second WBBL team to host a Pride match.
The development of these inaugural matches has been led by a Pride Working Group involving Player Ambassadors Andrew Tye and Mathilda Carmichael, staff and LGBTQIA+ organisation Living Proud.
This Group has held education sessions with the men’s and women’s playing groups and staff and continues regular consultation with leaders in this space to guarantee meaningful engagement with the LGBTQIA+ community.
Tye said he’s proud to be an ambassador and looks forward to amplifying the message of inclusivity at #TheFurance tomorrow night.
“It’s very important that we create a safe and inclusive environment for everyone and we’re doing a lot of work off the field and within our staff groups to educate people around Pride and what it means, and why we’re doing it,” Tye said.
“As athletes we have such a strong platform to drive an awareness campaign and to show people what it means and it’s really important for future generations to understand and accept all walks of life and differences in the world.”
Carmichael is proud to play for a club that has made inclusion of the LGBTQIA+ community an important part of its fabric.
“I know as a team we welcome everyone, and we want to see everyone’s differences – that’s what makes a team great and pushing that message more broadly into the community is really important because for any group or workplace to be successful diversity is key,” Carmichael said.
“The education session by Living Proud have been fantastic, and it creates conversation and makes individuals reflect on different situations and settings and how things can come across to people if you’re not educated. This ongoing education is not just allowing us to be good cricketers but ensures we are an inclusive team.”
The Perth Scorchers are part of WA Cricket, and CEO Christina Matthews said;
“The creation of our inaugural Pride matches is a proud moment for our Club, and we look forward continuing and growing its legacy.
“Through cricket we want to continue to provide a safe space that is welcoming for all people to come and attend matches at The Furnace. It’s about what’s happening behind the rainbow and the authentic engagement that we are committed to.
“We want people to know that it doesn’t matter what your sexuality, ethnicity, gender, or socio-economic background is – you are always welcome in the WA cricket family.”
BBL|12 – Game 7 (Pride Match)
Perth Scorchers v Sydney Thunder
Wednesday 4 January, first ball 6:15PM WST
Optus Stadium, Perth
LIVE: CH7, Foxtel, Kayo
BBL|12 – Game 8 (Retro Match)
Perth Scorchers v Brisbane Heat
Saturday 7 January, first ball 6:15PM WST
Optus Stadium, Perth
LIVE: Foxtel, Kayo