Photo Credit: Cricket NSW
CNSW Foundation and Shoalhaven Council’s Indigenous Cricket Festival saw 150 kids get active, play and learn all about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture alongside two epic Sydney Thunder and Sydney Sixers clashes.
The Cricket NSW Foundation’s Indigenous Youth program travelled to the NSW South Coast town of Bomaderry and featured an event at the grand opening of the newly renovated Artie Smith Oval.
The day included an official opening of the venue, with local dignitaries and a special performance by students from Gadhungal Marring and students from Nowra High School, followed by the Indigenous Youth program which is designed to enable access to cricket for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth all across NSW.
Courtesy of Transport for NSW (an Official Partner of Cricket NSW), 150 kids from five primary schools across the Greater Nowra Area were able to attend the day, being bussed in thanks to a grant which helped remove barriers for all students to attend.
Following a traditional Welcome to Country and smoking ceremony, the school children took part in cultural activities including boomerang throwing and basket weaving before a cricket clinic where many tried the sport for the very first time.
Sydney Thunder women’s captain, Julie Muir, said:
“This event is probably one of the best opportunities for me. I love my culture – I’m very proud of it – and seeing the new generation and the talent they have coming up, it’s just amazing.”
They had the thrill of being coached by members of the Sixers and Thunder Men’s and Women’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander teams who played exhibition T20 matches that afternoon.
Sydney Sixers men’s captain, Matt Carvosso, said:
“The clinic was amazing, there were so many kids here! And if this is the standard coming through, there is a lot of potential, and a lot to be excited about. It made us want to put on a show as well!”
Woolworths Bomaderry donated plenty of fruit, water, muesli bars and sausages to fuel the day, making all the difference as the representative Sydney Thunder and Sydney Sixers teams headed out to the field to entertain the crowd.
Sydney Thunder’s Women’s and Men’s teams came out on top winning both of their fixtures convincingly. The full match report can be viewed HERE.
Head of Cricket NSW Foundation, Jake Balnave, said:
“We’d like to share our sincere thanks to Shoalhaven City Council for all their support with this event and inviting us to be a part of the very special opening of their new facility in Bomaderry.
“It’s been a great occasion, we’re really proud of what the program has achieved, being able to engage so many children from across NSW in our Indigenous Cricket Festival. The showcase of talent was really impressive too, it’s a real joy to be able to offer opportunities like this and have them so well received.”