The recent success of the 2022 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cup was made possible through the assistance and collaboration of players and organisations.
For the first time in the competition’s history, two teams from Victoria made the trip to Albury-Wodonga to compete in the short format tournament held on Wiradjuri land.
Cricket Victoria’s representation in the event allows for the growth of the game amongst indigenous communities and creates an opportunity for participants to not only test themselves against other states but learn about different mobs from around the country.
This may not have been possible a few months ago with COVID enforced lockdowns and travel restrictions limiting the possibility of the competition taking place altogether, so Cricket NSW would like to extend a thank you to everyone at Cricket Victoria for putting in the effort to ensure the competition ran successfully.
Likewise, Cricket Albury-Wodonga’s Michael Erdeljac was instrumental in helping organise and deliver the tournament. Cricket NSW would like to extend a thank you to all parties involved in providing immaculate playing conditions.
Cricket NSW would also like to pay recognition to the CNSW Foundation, who in conjunction with the Sydney Thunder and Sydney Sixers organisations, held online auctions during both the WBBL and BBL seasons in which signed indigenous themed player jerseys were listed for bidding.
The funds raised from this initiative exceeded $25,000, all of which was directly reinvested into delivering Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cricket programs. This included assistance with travel, accommodation and tournament costs.
Finally, Cricket NSW would like to recognise and express gratitude to those who enriched the cultural significance of the event.
- The opening ceremony was conducted by Wiradjuri Elder, Aunty Edna, who also performed the Welcome to Country.
- A smoking ceremony was led by Uncle Noel
- A cultural immersion experience was undertaken at the Wonga Wetlands
- A cultural performance took place at the Wonga Wetlands featuring Benji, Kaeleb and Zion.
Before European settlement the original inhabitants and traditional owners of the Murray River area near Albury and Wodonga were the Wiradjuri, Wavereoo and Dhudhuroa people. The river was considered the giver of life, not a divider of communities.
In recognition of the Wiradjuri people and the assistance they provided in establishing the Wonga Wetlands, particularly the construction of the replica Indigenous campsite, Council named them ‘Wonga’, which is Wiradjuri for the Little Black Cormorant – still one of the most abundant bird species in this area.