The Hungry Jack’s National Basketball League (NBL) will stage its inaugural Indigenous Round from January 29-February 2.
The round will recognise and acknowledge Indigenous culture and basketball across Australia and New Zealand. The decision to stage an Indigenous Round follows the success of last year’s Indigenous game hosted by the Illawarra Hawks.
All nine NBL teams will wear Indigenous uniforms designed by local Indigenous artists in Round 18, while the Sydney Kings’ Indigenous game will be on January 19 and South East Melbourne Phoenix’s on February 9.
All Indigenous Round games will include a Welcome to Country, an Acknowledgement of Country, and other Indigenous integrations. Key members of Indigenous communities will be invited to all games.
NBL Commissioner Jeremy Loeliger said: “There are a number of Indigenous players, officials and administrators who’ve made an important contribution to basketball both in Australia and New Zealand.
“It’s important we recognise these key Indigenous figures in a meaningful and impactful way, while also acknowledging the contribution wider Indigenous communities have made to the game.
“We will contribute proceeds from the sales of the Indigenous jerseys towards the development of young Indigenous players to ensure young male and females have a pathway to pursue their basketball dreams.
“We want to ensure others can follow in the footsteps of players such as Danny Morseu, Patty Mills, Nate Jawai, Paul Henare and Pero Cameron and the many others who’ve made such a huge contribution to the game both here and around the world.”
The NBL will work with its key stakeholders to develop a Reconciliation Action Plan to support the national reconciliation movement.
Indigenous Round tips off on Wednesday January 29 when Melbourne United host the Perth Wildcats at Melbourne Arena.