This week’s episode, The Hardest Thing You’ll Do Today, is a story of strength, discipline, self determination and football. Produced by Emma Lancaster, additional interviews and these photographs from last year’s knockout by Pauline Muyl.
Redfern is home to the oldest indigenous sports club in Australia. The Redfern All Blacks have been kicking around on the paddock for over 70 years. To the people who live there, the All Blacks are more than just a footy club – they’re a huge part of the community.
The NSW Annual Aboriginal Rugby League Knockout started in 1971. Since that time it has grown to a four-day carnival with more than 60 teams competing over the long weekend in October.
There is fierce competition at the Knock Out and loyalties to the home team run deep. Thousands of people come to the event and you are never too young to start barracking for your club.
The Redfern All Blacks train hard but they play harder. The RAB play in the Knock Out at Raymond Terrace, Lakeside Ovals in 2013
‘We keep the ball in motion, just like a rolling ocean. All Blacks play the game” – A RAB fans looks on at the 2013 Knock Out, he wears the clubs song on his t-shirt.
The RAB players collect their jerseys.
Shane Phillips is the glue that keeps together the Redfern All Blacks. He looks on as the A grade team give it their all.
The RAB boys look on to the field and watch the game.
Team colours play an important part at the Knock Out. Even the ball is done up.
The Redfern All Blacks were one of the first teams to compete in the football carnival and claim to have won the most titles.
The Redfern All Blacks in action.
Tension runs high as the game draws to a close. Shane Phillips (right) looks on with other RAB players, hoping for a win.
The Redfern All Blacks verse Griffith at Lakeside Ovals; they shake hands after a good game.
Lisa Williams (right) the first female RAB President chats with a supporter, underneath the tents.
‘Often down. Never Beaten’ Redfern All Blacks supporters brave the heat to support their team at the NSW Knock Out in 2013.