Indigenous Australian Invitational Rugby Team
The Indigenous Australian Invitational Rugby team will be embarking on a five-match rugby tour of the United States and Canada. The team is an under-25 squad comprised of players of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders descent. Selection to the invitational team was based on the contributions made as a player, as well as to their communities. David John Conyers, who is the head coach for Austria, will coach the side.
The team will assemble for a training camp at the Bindal Sports Grounds in Townsville, Queensland, Australia on September 12-14 before departing for New York City where they will arrive on September 15.
Tours are not just about rugby and gaining a cultural appreciation of countries visited is an integral part of tours. On September 16-17 the team will be able to sightsee in New York City before playing their first match against the United States Military Academy at West Point on Tuesday, September 18.
Following the match, the teams will have the opportunity to share in the post-match festivities before departing for Boston. On Wednesday, September 19 the team will face Portland Rugby Football Club at 7 pm at Deering Memorial Stadium in Portland, Maine. Prior to the match, the team will volunteer at Preble Street, a long-term charity partner of the club.
The team will then travel to Montreal, Canada the following day and will have both Friday and Saturday to explore the city. On Sunday, September 23 the team will travel to Oshawa Canada to play the Ontario Blues Development XV that day. Following the match, it is then on to Toronto.
The following day, the team will see Niagara Falls and then participate in a coaching clinic at Iroquois Roots Rugby. There First Nations youth ages 5-18 are introduced to rugby through camps, as well as providing opportunities to protect and practice the culture through an exchange of stories and traditional games.
On September 25 the team will fly to Denver where they will face the Indigenous Warriors on The 26th at 6 pm at the University of Denver. The following day the team is off to Los Angeles and will play their final match of the tour against California State University, Long Beach before returning to Australia.