9 October 2023

Tamworth Crows Showcase Spirit and Determination at the 2023 Koori Knockout

The vibrant spirit of the NSW Aboriginal Rugby League was on full display this year, with the 51st Koori Knockout taking place on Darkinjung country at CCRSRC Tuggerah from Friday 29 September to Monday 2 October.

The Koori Knockout showcases not only the raw talent of rugby league players but also the rich tapestry of the Indigenous culture. The event saw 150 teams spread across six divisions including men’s, women’s, and junior tournaments demonstrating the grand scale and importance New South Wales’ largest annual Indigenous sporting event holds on the Indigenous calendar.

This year, Whitehaven was proud to sponsor the U15s Tamworth Crows. In preparation for the tournament, the team underwent a 4-week journey to the KO Youth Program, equipping them with health education workshops to nurture their holistic development. Although they faced sweltering heat and the pressure of a first-round game on a Friday, their passion and determination were undeniable. Despite not progressing to the next round, the unforgettable experience that the players took away with them can only be had at the Koori Knockout.

Bob Sutherland, Whitehaven’s Manager for Aboriginal Community Relations, underscored the significance of this event and the broader role of sports in enriching Aboriginal communities.

“Whitehaven’s Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan places a strong emphasis on supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander sports. We are thrilled to extend our sponsorships and contributions to diverse sports clubs and entities throughout North West NSW.”

“Our ongoing commitment to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities spreads beyond long-term training and job prospects to ways in which we can help empower people. We recognise the transformative impact of sports in achieving this goal. For this reason, we are committed to supporting and empowering communities not only via education, training, and healthcare but also via sponsorship of representative-level sports. In FY23, we donated around $183,000 to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations, including the Clontarf Foundation.”

In events like the Koori Knockout, the focus isn’t solely on the sport; it’s about the collective spirit, camaraderie, and the deepening of community bonds. We eagerly anticipate the 52nd Koori Knockout, which will be hosted by this year’s men’s division champions, the Walgett Aboriginal Connection.

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