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Indigenous Round comes to AAMI Park

Melbourne Storm will kick off the NRL’s Indigenous Round with Club activities and cultural celebrations across the week leading up to the Thursday night’s showpiece clash against rivals, Manly, at AAMI Park.

Game day in Melbourne will be transformed into a celebration of Indigenous culture to kick-off the round with AAMI Park to be plunged into darkness, setting the scene for a stirring pre-match ceremony, one the Club hopes will become an annual event on the NRL calendar.  

Last week, the Club released its 2022 Indigenous jersey, designed by proud Yorta Yorta, Gunnai, Gunditjmara and Wurundjeri man and artist, Coree Thorpe. Using the Rainbow Serpent as inspiration for the design, Coree captured not only Indigenous cultures, but the history of Storm’s journey in his final creation. 

The Club’s important partnerships with organisations Coles, Deadly Choices and Dardi Munworro will take centre stage this week, acknowledging the work they do to connect Indigenous communities not only through rugby league, but by providing resources and environments to live healthier lives.  

500 tickets to the Thursday night’s match will be distributed within Indigenous communities thanks to the match day partner, Coles, with ambassador Eddie Betts also slated to speak ahead of the game. 

Monday will see Storm host an Indigenous Cultural Day as part of the NRL’s School to Work program with Coles First Nations Pathway Program recipients, Ammaron (AJ) Gudgeon, a 19-year-old Noongar man and Seamus King-Smith, a 19-year-old Kulkalgal man talking to students about their journey so far.  

Storm and Coles help First Nations players reach the NRL

Later in the week on Wednesday the entire Melbourne Storm staff and players will experience a Welcome to Country and Smoking Ceremony, followed by speeches from Indigenous jersey artist Coree Thorpe and past Indigenous player and Club legend Greg Inglis who will speak to importance of Indigenous Round and their experience. Following, the Storm squad will participate in their weekly Captain’s Run donning Deadly Choices shirts at AAMI Park.  

Thursday’s pre-match ceremony is set to be a special one, acknowledging the important contribution of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples make to the game of rugby league both on and off the field.  

Beginning with a stadium blackout, Storm will highlight its past and present Indigenous players and raise the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags before cultural performances from Djirri Djirri and Koori Youth.  

That will then be followed by a performance from ARIA-nominated singer Emily Warramara. Both Manly and Storm squads will then participate in the now annual gift exchange between the two teams. Yorta Yorta artist Scott Darlow will also take centre stage at half time, following the first 40 minutes of action on the park. 

Don’t miss your chance to be a part of the special clash on Thursday night, secure your seat.

Indigenous Round 2022 program

Acknowledgement of Country

Melbourne Storm respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.