National rugby players sing Australia's national anthem in Indigenous language for first time before match

Olivia Fox sings Australia's National Anthem in the traditional Eora language during the Tri Nations rugby match between Argentina's Pumas and Australia's Wallabies at Bankwest Stadium, Sydney, Australia, December 5, 2020.

(CNN)National rugby players sang an Indigenous version of Australia's national anthem for the first time on Saturday, a move that won widespread praise and spurred calls to make it a permanent feature at Australian sporting events.

Performing arts student Olivia Fox sang a powerful rendition of the national anthem, first in the language of the Eora Nation -- a group of Indigenous clans from the Sydney metropolitan area -- and then in English, before Australia's' Tri-Nations test against Argentina at Western Sydney Stadium.
Fox, a Wiradjuri woman, was supported by the 23 Wallabies players, who were wearing their First Nations jerseys with an Indigenous design for only the second time this year, and could be seen belting out the words behind her.
    "We were practicing it during the week and we were very proud to have that opportunity to do it, and I think it sounded pretty good too," said Australia captain Michael Hooper, according to Reuters.
      "Wearing an indigenous jersey and singing that was great to be a part of."
      It was the first time Australia's national anthem -- Advance Australia Fair -- had been sung in an Indigenous language at a major sporting event and prompted an outpouring of pride and praise.
      Former Wallabies player Matt Giteau said on Twitter that it was a "Special moment in Australian sport.. well done Wallabies."
        Australian rugby journalist Christy Doran called the anthem "spine-tingling."
        "The finest rendition of the Australian national anthem. That was brilliant. Never felt more proud of our anthem," he posted on Twitter.
        Other nations have Indigenous languages as part of their national anthems -- New Zealand's anthem, for example, is sung in both Maori and English.
        CNN sports anchor Alex Thomas said on Twitter: "A long way to go for Australia to connect with its indigenous culture in the same way as NZ but hats off to the Wallabies."
        Australia sings the national anthem during the Tri-Nations rugby match between the Australian Wallabies and Argentina Pumas on December 5, 2020 in Sydney.