Young Fremantle forward Liam Henry has explained why he finds the AFL’s Sir Doug Nicholls Round games so special.

In advance of Sunday’s clash against Port Adelaide, Henry and his teammates were up before dawn on Tuesday as players and staff attended a smoking ceremony on Victor George Kailis Oval.

Henry said that he loved seeing football and his Aboriginal culture come together and had no issues with getting up early in the cold.

“In every sense, I’m a proud Aboriginal person and I love my culture,” Henry said.

“To be able to join the two things that I love, footy and culture, and bring it into one thing, it’s so special.

"In Indigenous Culture, it’s about driving the good spirits into us and bringing away the bad spirits.

"We do it before the sunrise, because in our culture, the Sun symbolises the Mother. It’s why we did it so early and it’s why the boys are freezing this morning but there’s a great meaning behind it."

Proud Indigenous partner


Fremantle will wear a clash Indigenous jumper – designed by Des Headland, Mikayla Morrison and Kevin Bynder - against Port and the home version against the Western Bulldogs at Optus Stadium.

Henry he said he felt a personal connection to the design. The country towns of Moora, Kununoppin, Mukinbudin and Merredin – where family members of Headland, Morrison and Bynder still live - are represented on the jumper and Henry grew up in nearby Tammin.

“This design by Des, Kevin and Mikayla brings everything together. Where I’m from in the Tammin region, it’s really close to the places that are set (on the jumper),” Henry said.

“It has a close meaning to me and, hopefully, I’ll be lucky enough to pull it on this week and go out and wear it with pride and, hopefully, we get the win.”

Proud Indigenous partner

02:10 Mins
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Behind the scenes of our smoking ceremony

Hear from Liam Henry and Michael Walters as the club shared a special morning at Fremantle HQ for our smoking ceremony.

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Proud Indigenous partner


Henry said he was motivated to keep up his recent run of form as he looks to retain his place for the next fortnight and run out in front of the home fans against the Western Bulldogs in under a fortnight.

“It means a lot to be able to pull the Fremantle jumper on in any game but especially in Indigenous round,” Henry said.

“I was lucky enough to debut in Indigenous round last year.

“I’m just taking it week by week. Hopefully, I can string along some good games and, hopefully, JL (senior coach Justin Longmuir) leaves me in.

“If I’m not and I’m watching it on the sidelines, I’ll still be proud and hoping the boys can get the win and continue to perform.”

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