Geelong Cats will wear the creation of one of their own, Quinton Narkle, when they step onto Metricon Stadium on Saturday.
The Wajuk and Balardong player and budding artist designed the club’s 2019 Indigenous guernsey after the club approached him last year.
“It’s a great honour to have been asked to design the club’s Indigenous guernsey,” the 21-year-old midfielder said.
“I wanted the design to represent all seven Indigenous players while recognising their individual language groups.”
The guernsey pays tribute to stories from Geelong’s Wadawurrung Country, Narkle’s own region in Western Australia and the languages of six other Indigenous Cats.
“The guernsey includes Bunjil, the eagle, the creator of the Wadawurrung and Kulin nations,” Narkle explained.
“The Giant Trevally represents our connection with the Arnhem Land region and the snake-like pattern throughout the whole jumper symbolises the rainbow serpent, which is the creator of my own region.”
Graham ‘Polly’ Farmer’s number 5 also appeared on the guernsey as a sign of respect to a club legend, Narkle said.
“(It is) a tribute to him and all he has done for the Geelong Football Club and Indigenous players.”
Narkle has previously painted boots for teammate Jamaine Jones in his AFL debut and Tom Hawkins for Sir Doug Nicholls Round in 2018.
To recognise this weekend’s Sir Doug Nicholls Round, a Welcome to Country will take place before Geelong’s open training session at Gold Coast on Friday afternoon.
On Saturday night, a gift exchange will take place between Geelong and Gold Coast before the bounce.
An Indigenous Geelong player will also accompany captain Joel Selwood to the coin toss.
The Cats will don the guernsey for Djilang Round when they take on Sydney Swans at GMHBA Stadium 1 June.
Djilang is the Wadawurrung word for Geelong and the Cats will recognise the impact of our nation’s first people on Australian Rules football during the round.
Indigenous Geelong Cats include Nakia Cockatoo (Iwaidja, Marrithiyel and Yupangathi), Jamaine Jones (Barkindji), Tim Kelly (Noongar), Nathan Kreuger (Noongar and Ngarrindjeri), Brandan Parfitt (Larrakia and Warumungu) and Blake Schlensog (Yidinjdji).