The Suncorp Super Netball competition this week heads north in celebration of Indigenous Round, with matches being played in Townsville and Cairns from Wednesday evening. The league’s 2020 Indigenous Round theme is “A Women’s Ceremony – a gathering of many journeys at the same destination”, and while this narrative was created long before the announcement of a Queensland hub, it now has additional relevance with all teams travelling to Far North Queensland.

The theme stemmed from the artwork that was especially designed by Wurundjeri/Yorta-Yorta woman Simone Thomson for the round’s match ball.

Thomson shared the inspirational story behind the ball design that will feature throughout Round 13.

“I want every female who holds this ball to identify with it, to feel empowered, to feel the spirit of the oldest living culture on earth on their shoulders and to rise like a warrior. I want them to grip it in their fingers and feel the smile from within, the chill on their skin. Whether they play barefoot in the red desert dust, in the bushland along the riverbank or with professional shoes on a polished indoor court – I want them to feel special, worthy – able,” she said.

“This is my dreaming story of Women’s Ceremony, a gathering of many journeys to the same destination. It’s a celebration of anything is possible and self-belief, a celebration of coming together as community and acknowledging the sacredness of this land. And lastly, it’s a celebration of inspiration. For we look to the inspiring to be inspired.”

In addition to the match ball, teams will all wear dresses featuring Indigenous artwork that will each be unveiled throughout the week, and cultural performances will be incorporated into match day activities.

The Indigenous Round action begins in Townsville on Wednesday evening with the Collingwood Magpies taking on the Sunshine Coast Lightning at Townsville Entertainment and Convention Centre.

Attention will then turn to Cairns Pop Up Arena on Saturday for a huge double-header that sees the West Coast Fever hosting GIANTS Netball and the Adelaide Thunderbirds facing the NSW Swifts.

Then, on Sunday, the Melbourne Vixens and Queensland Firebirds will play the final match in Cairns to close out the round.

Local media opportunities will take place in Cairns and Townsville, with details to follow in coming days.

All matches will be live on the Netball Live Official App