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Indigenous map showcases NRL, NRLW players' heritage

As part of the NRL’s 2020 Indigenous Round theme of "Pass Back. Move Forward." the players have showcased the locations of their family heritage on a map of Australia.

More than 60 NRL and NRLW players are Indigenous Australians and, inconjunction with the NRL, they have charted their family backgrounds from the many First Nations territories of the nation's first inhabitants dating back 60,000 years.

The Wiradjuri people of central NSW has the highest representation of current players - 18 NRL and NRLW stars have family heritage with the Wiradjuri, including representative stars Josh Addo-Carr, Blake Ferguson, Andrew Fifita, Shayla Bent and Jack Wighton.

The Bundjalung nation - a coastal region on the NSW-Queensland border - is also heavily represented through the likes of Ryan James, James Roberts, Cody Walker, Wade Graham, Brian Kelly, Tyrone Roberts and Corey Thompson.

The NRL has made Indigenous Round an annual feature of the Telstra Premiership to highlight the importance of understanding and appreciating Indigenous history and culture in order to build a better future.

The focus of Round 12 was about encouraging fans to learn about the traditional custodians of the land where they live, and in support of this, all stadiums hosting Indigenous Round matches included an acknowledgement to local First Nations people as part of their stadium name.

The lists of player ancestries were compiled through consultation with clubs, venues, players, local councils, local Aboriginal land councils and local community groups.

Indigenous Round players

Broncos: Jack Bird (Yuin), David Fifita (Badu Island), Kotoni Staggs (Wiradjuri); 
Bulldogs: Adam Elliott (Wiradjuri), Tyrone Harding (Murrawarri), Chris Smith (Lurijta Arrente), Reimis Smith (Wiradjuri & Bundjalung), Isaiah Tass (Yuibera); 
Cowboys: Reuben Cotter (Boigu Island), Scott Drinkwater (Wiradjuri), Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow (Saibai Island);
Dragons: Tyrell Fuimaono (Wiradjuri), Josh Kerr (Quandamooka), Jason Saab (Anaiwan), Tristan Sailor (Erub (Darnley) Island), Jayden Sullivan (Yuin);
Eels: Blake Ferguson (Wiradjuri), Jai Field (Wiradjuri), Will Smith (Gumbaingirr &
Knights: Edrick Lee (Badu & Moa Islands), Gehamat Shibasaki (Boigu & Murray Islands), Tyronne Roberts-Davis (Bundjalung), Connor Watson (Gamilaroi); 
Panthers: Daine Laurie (Bundjalung & Yaegl), Brayden McGrady (Gamilaroi), Glenn McGrady (Gamilaroi), Brent Naden (Wiradjuri);
Rabbitohs: Braidon Burns (Gamilaroi & Wiradjuri), Josh Cook (Bidjigal & Yuin), Troy Dargan (Gumbaynggir), Dane Gagai (Yam & Badu Islands), Alex Johnston (Saibai Island), Latrell Mitchell (Biripi), James Roberts (Bundjalung), Cody Walker (Bundjalung & Yuin);
Raiders: Sebastian Kris, Jack Wighton (Wiradjuri);
Roosters: N/A;
Sea Eagles: Jade Anderson (Wiradjuri), Cade Cust, Reed Izzard, Zac Saddler (Wiradjuri), Joel Thompson (Ngiyaampa);
Sharks: Andrew Fifita (Wiradjuri), Wade Graham (Bundjalung), William Kennedy (Gamilaroi), Jesse Ramien (Wiradjuri), Braydon Trindall (Gamilaroi); 
Storm: Josh Addo-Carr (Wiradjuri), Jack Bowyer (Guugu Yimithirr & Olkola), Nicho Hynes (Wiradjuri), Brenko Lee (Argun/Badu);
Tigers: N/A;
Titans: Ryan James (Bundjalung), Brian Kelly (Bundjalung), Tyrone Peachey (Wiradjuri), Jonus Pearson (Hammond Island), Nathan Peats (Biripi), Tyrone Roberts (Bundjalung), Treymain Spry (Badu Island), Corey Thompson (Bundjalung), Ash Taylor (Munanjali & Yuwalaraay);
Warriors: Josh Curran (Darug), Jamayne Taunoa-Brown (Kaurna & Narungga)

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours 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.

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