Dan Christian named Cricket Australia's National Indigenous captain

Dan Christian named Cricket Australia’s National Indigenous captain

The number of indigenous players performing at high levels all over the country has been increasing considerably over the last few years.

Dan Christian of the Hobart Hurricanes
Dan Christian of the Hobart Hurricanes. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

Dan Christian has been named Cricket Australia‘s National Indigenous Captain for the men’s squad while Ashleigh Gardner is set to lead the women. CA has also announced extended squads for male and female players ahead of next year’s tour to the UK.

Both indigenous teams will undergo a series of high-performance camps and matches as part of their preparations for a tour of the UK next year. The tour has been scheduled as a commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the 1868 Aboriginal team which became the first sporting team from Australia to go on an international tour.

As a result, the players will have their names engraved on the honours board at Brisbane’s National Cricket Centre, which is a matter of great pride and honour for all the indigenous cricketers.

“It’s nice to have achievements like that. I was lucky enough to be part of the squad that went to England in 2009. To be named as a captain of a full-strength side is wonderful. I think there’s a great opportunity for kids to make cricket a feasible career, particularly young Indigenous kids through the pathways now available,” said Christian.

Interestingly, as many as three sets of brothers are a part of the men’s team. These include twins Liam and Rhys Ward from Tasmania, Sam and Brendan Doggett from Queensland and Nick and Scott Boland from Victoria. What’s more fascinating is that all six are fast bowlers.

Increasing number of indigenous players in Australia: Greg Chappell

Greg Chappell, who is currently CA’s National Talent Manager, mentioned that the number of indigenous players performing at high levels all over the country has been increasing considerably over the last few years.

“In recent years we have seen a noticeable rise in Indigenous cricketers coming through the talent pathway. Now more than 60 male and female indigenous cricketers are playing First XI Premier Cricket and several are having an impact in the WBBL and BBL,” Chappell was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au.

“All players who have been selected in these squads are not only great cricketers but also strong Indigenous role models who, I have no doubt, will inspire the next generation of Dan Christians and Ashleigh Gardners,” he added.

Here are the two 2017 National Indigenous Squads:

2017 National Indigenous Squad (Women): Ashleigh Gardner (C), Carly Fuller, Christina Coulson, Clodagh Ryall, Emily Martin (Bowden), Emma Manix-Geeves, Hannah Darlington, Haylee Hoffmeister, Jacinda Goodger-Chandler, Jemma Astley, Kavita Pepper, Maddison Greenhalgh, Marinda Hale, Molly Ward, Natalie Plane, Roxanne Van-Veen, Sally Moylan, Samara Williams, Sara Darney, Zoe Fleming

2017 National Indigenous Squad (Men): Dan Christian (C), Alex Melville, Ben Abbatangelo, Brendan Smith, Brendan Doggett, Cameron Trask, Damon Egan, Dane Ugle, D’Arcy Short, Jonte Pattison, Joshua Lalor, Liam Ward, Nathan Price, Nick Boland, Rhys Ward, Ryan Lees, Sam Doggett, Scott Boland, Zac Chapman