Sports has been an important way to bridge different cultures. For the aboriginal Australians and their colonial settlers, it was cricket.
Cricket was first played in Australia in the early 1800s in Sydney in an area now part of Hyde Park. The game came to Melbourne around 1838 with the formation of the Melbourne Cricket Club. Cricket was introduced to the aboriginals in South Australia in the 1850s as a method of controlling the native population, to stop boredom and prevent them from straying back into the bush. Cricket matches regularly took place on cattle stations where aboriginals were employed as stockmen. Cricket was also used as a way of “civilising” the aboriginal people and introducing them to white values.
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The first Australian cricket team touring England.