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WBBL franchises to don Indigenous kits for First Nations Round

Callan Morse -

The Women's Big Bash League's First Nations Round is in full swing with fixtures being played on Country across the nation.

To celebrate the Country which each franchise calls home, each team will wear newly-designed First Nations kits, to celebrate Indigenous culture from around the nation.

Each uniform has been designed by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists, sharing the unique stories connected to the traditional lands of each club.

Proud Noongar artist Linda Loo, a self-taught artist who was born in Corrigin and is connected to the Balladong and Whadjuk clans, designed the Perth Scorchers' kit.

The design features a swan surrounded by u-shapes, representing players gathering in a barefoot circle before a match.

Other elements of the design tell the story of travel, the WACA Ground's improvement project and cricket history.

Scorchers captains Sophie Devine and Ashton Turner were involved in the design process, with shirts presented to WBBL players during a special smoking ceremony.

"It's a fantastic design that's not only beautiful, but really impactful," Devine said.

"There are elements that illustrate each squad, but also tell the story of the bond that develops among teammates, the club and our members and fans."

A swan features at the centre of the Perth Scorchers' First Nations Round kit. (Image: Perth Scorchers)

Designed by Steven Warrior, the Adelaide Strikers shirt will be worn by the home side when they clash with the Perth Scorchers for the Aunty Faith Thomas Trophy, marking the firs time the trophy has been competed for since Aunty Faith passed away in April.

Strikers' captain Tahlia McGrath said her side was proud to wear a shirt full of meaning.

"There's so much detail in this shirt that highlights so much – for example, we've got the meeting place of Adelaide Oval, represented with the first 11 Indigenous male cricketers to represent Australia," she said, via cricket.com.au.

"(One section) represents everyone's individual journey to get through to cricket and then on the back we've got some words in native Kaurna language which represents our values.

"There is so much going on in this shirt and there is so much meaning behind it and we are really proud to wear it."

The Scorchers and Strikers will wear their First Nations Round kits when competing for the Aunty Faith Thomas Trophy. (Image: Mark Brake/Getty Images)

The Brisbane Heat's First Nations Round kit is an evolution of the original strip worn in the past two seasons.

Jointly designed by Heat batter and proud Kunja woman Mikayla Hinkley alongside Brisbane Indigenous artist, Delores McDonald, the design champions the performances of Indigenous Queensland representative, Eddie Gilbert.

The design features the Brisbane River with its abundance of foods, animal and human tracks, the raninbow serpent/snake and a circle representing the 'Gabba.

Proud Kunja woman Mikayla Hinkley. (Image: Getty Images)

Designed by Yuin artist Rhe Lotter, the Sydney Thunder's playing strip design features the Aboriginal symbol for people, representing all players that wear the club colours

Also featured are boomerangs which represent strength, resilience and the fighting spirit that is embodied throughout the club.

Proud Kamilaroi woman Hannah Darlington. (Image: Getty Images)

Proud Kamilaroi woman and the current captain of Cricket Australia's Women's Indigenous team, Hannah Darlington said the coming together of all levels of cricket to celebrate First Nations Round showed how far the game had come in recent years.

"To have a dedicated cricket First Nations Round that recognises and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples from community level right through to the elite level is something, as an Aboriginal woman, that I am very proud of," Darlington said, via cricket.com.au.

Wiradjuri woman Lua Pellegrini designed the Sixers' kit, which reflects their coastal region with the ocean being a major centrepiece of the kit.

The design also represents the importance of the ocean to Indigenous clans up and down the coastline, with two circles in the centre of the shirt portraying the Sixers' two homes, the Sydney Cricket Ground and C Ex. International Stadium in Coffs Harbour.

Proud Muruwari woman Ash Gardner. (Image: Getty Images)

The Hobart Hurricanes unveiled their new strip, representative of Palawa culture against the Sydney Sixers at North Sydney Oval on November 10.

The 'Canes will again sport the kit at their home First Nations fixture on November 23.

The Hobart Hurricanes designs is similar to previous years. (Image: Cricket Australia)

The Melbourne Stars' First Nations Round kit was designed by Taungurun woman and artist, Sammy Trust.

The design features gum leaves (representing players), water (representing Melbourne's Yarra River) and the Southern Cross (representing the south eastern sky).

A proud descendent of Peek and Kirrae Whurrong clans of the Maar nation from south-west Victoria (Warrnambool), local artist Bayley Mifsud – known by her Aboriginal name Merindah-Gunya, meaning 'Beautiful Spirit' designed the Renegades' uniform.

Renegades off-spinner and proud Jawoyn woman Ella Hayward also contributed by exploring the significance of the design and what it should represent.

Proud Jawoyn woman Ella Hayward. (Image: Getty Images)

The resulting kit displays a powerful symbol of unity, featuring 11 players coming together at a central meeting place: the cricket oval.

The design also symbolises the connection between players and the land, representing the significance of the natural environment in Australia's Indigenous culture.

WBBL|09 is being held from Sunday 5 November to Friday 24 November at venues across the country.

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