Indigenous female Origin players stay silent during national anthem, as men’s captain Boyd Cordner reveals he supports his teammates silently protesting during the song
- Indigenous women from both teams stayed silent as Kim Sheehy sang anthem
- NSW captain Boyd Cordner said any Origin player who protested had his support
- During the men’s State of Origin Latrell Mitchell and Cody Walker were silent
- The NSW Blues took out women’s Origin on Friday evening by 14-4
Indigenous players from Queensland and NSW have refused to sing the national anthem ahead of women’s State of Origin.
As The Voice Australia star Kim Sheehy sang the national anthem the camera panned across players at North Sydney Oval.
Some players sang along but multiple women from both teams kept their mouths firmly shut.
Queensland players Brittany Breayley, Chelsea Lenarduzzi, Amber Pilley and Rona Peters did not sing, and neither did NSW players Shontelle Stowers, Shakiah Tungai and Takilele Katoa.
The women stood still while their teammates sang the national anthem, with some of the other women bouncing for joy as it neared the end and the game was moments away.
The skipper for the men’s team – Boyd Cordner – said on Friday any player who protested the national anthem had his support, even if he did sing it himself.
‘That’s obviously been a hot topic,’ he said, according to Nine.
‘That’s their views and I support what they believe, if that’s how strongly they believe.
Indigenous players of both the NRL State of Origin women’s teams have refused to sing the national anthem ahead of the game
The women stood still while their team mates sang the national anthem, with some of the other women bouncing for joy as it neared the end and the game was moments away
He said he would support what ever an Indigenous player wanted to do for their culture and if that means not singing, that is fine by him.
During the State of Origin men’s clash at Suncorp stadium for Game One, Latrell Mitchell, Cody Walker and Josh Addo-Carr stayed silent during the national anthem.
They were among at least nine Origin players who refused to sing the national anthem during the series opener on June 5.
In 2015, Indigenous Deborah Cheetham turned down the opportunity to sing at the AFL grand final.
‘I knew it was honour to be asked but I simply can no longer sing the words “for we are young and free”,’ she wrote for The Conversation.
During the State of Origin men’s clash at Suncorp stadium for game one Latrell Mitchell, Cody Walker and Josh Addo-Carr stayed silent during the national anthem
‘Don’t get me wrong: I wanted to find a way to make it OK. I told the event organisers that I was available to perform but I made it a condition of my appearance that I would be permitted to replace the words “for we are young and free” with “in peace and harmony”.
She said the AFL considered her ultimatum, but in the end decided they couldn’t openly support the change.
‘So I made the only decision I could make – I turned down the opportunity to sing the national anthem in front of more than 90,000 people at the ground and potentially millions more watching on TV.’
Daily Mail Australia has contacted NSW Rugby League and Queensland Rugby League for comment.