Sydney Thunder Indigenous XI captain Tyran Liddiard is a proud Biripi man who is paving the way for young Aboriginal people.
At just 21 years old, the talented wicketkeeper-batsman has captained the Sydney Thunder Indigenous XI supported by Homestar Finance, represented New South Wales at the National Indigenous Cricket Championships and recently became the first Indigenous player to be named Player of the McDonald’s NSW Premier Cricket Final.
Player of the #NSWPremierCricket Final, @PenrithCC wicketkeeper Tyran Liddiard (97 from 149, 4 catches).— Cricket NSW (@CricketNSW) March 31, 2019
Benaud Medal presented by former @CricketNSWBlues player, coach and current England coach, Trevor Bayliss. pic.twitter.com/bBB66nO1q1
However, the most memorable moment of his career is being part of Australia’s historic tour of the UK to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the 1868 Aboriginal team’s tour of the UK.
“To this day it’s probably one of my favourite moments of my life, and easily the best moment of my cricket career,” he said.
“To be able to go overseas to England and showcase our skills was amazing. The amount of attention we got was unbelievable, that all these locals wanted to know not only about cricket but about our Indigenous culture.
“I am a very proud Indigenous man and I love the fact that I’m able to play cricket and all the other opportunities I’ve been given, especially through Sydney Thunder. To be able to represent my community, meet people and share Indigenous culture is one of my favourite things. It’s the highlight of my cricket season.”
One of his main goals is to be a role model for young Aboriginal people not just on the cricket field, but in all aspects of life.
“It’s quite humbling to think about, but I’m really proud to be a role model, within cricket but I’m also at uni and will hopefully be a primary school teacher very soon. For me, it’s about promoting the importance of education and healthy lifestyles to the next generation of Indigenous kids, as well as cricket. Indigenous people are commonly pretty good at sport, but it’s important to have something to fall back on as well.”
An aspiring primary school teacher, Tyran recently became the first person in his family to graduate from university and is currently completing his Master of Education.
“I was the first person in my family to graduate and I was also the first person in my family to just go to uni, which is a massive achievement.
“I like to see myself as a role model within my own family as well, just setting a good example. It doesn’t mean you have to go to uni, just showing my younger cousins and other family members that I’m working hard, and I want to achieve things, and hopefully that will help them to do the same.”
His father Glen Liddiard is a former professional rugby league player who now works in Indigenous welfare at the Penrith Panthers.
“Dad’s very proud of his culture and he’s passed that down to me. Me and my brothers, we know where we’re from and how proud we should be to be Aboriginal. I remember going to school and telling everyone I was Aboriginal just because I was that proud.
“He brought me up to be very proud of who I am. I’ve been very lucky that I’ve always known that I’m Aboriginal and I’ve been able to be proud of it since I was born.”
With a supportive family behind him and a belief in the power of sport to bring people together, Tyran is focussed on turning challenges into opportunities.
“I used to cop a lot of racism from people saying I wasn’t Aboriginal because I was white and things like that which really offended me.
“I feel like we’ve come a long way since then, but a lot of people still don’t know much about Indigenous culture and that’s when those stereotypes exist, which is another reason why it’s unreal that through cricket I can help educate others.
“The reason why I love sport, especially cricket, is the mateship. It’s a team sport and it brings people together around a shared passion.”
Sydney Thunder is committed to Indigenous engagement and through a variety of initiatives and programs, the club strives provide opportunities for Indigenous cricketers across the Thunder Nation and make a meaningful difference in the community.
For more information, please contact Sydney Thunder.