Spine-tingling moment Maori All Stars stun with a powerful haka before the Indigenous side responds with a passionate tribal dance of their own
- Maori All Stars took on Indigenous All Stars on Saturday night in Towsnsville
- Maori rugby leagues performed an inspiring haka, Indigenous a tribal dance
- Crowd and commentators were stunned by the level of passion on display
- Match finished a 10-10 draw, with Indigenous squad mounting a late comeback
The cultural aspect of rugby league was on full display when the Maori All Stars and Indigenous All Stars squared off in Townsville on Saturday night.
Both sides performed spine tingling pre-game hakas and tribal dances respectively, captivating the crowd and TV audiences across the nation.
First up was the Maori All Stars, and they didn’t disappoint.
Maori All Stars hooker Issac Luke (pictured above) was inspirational in the pre game haka
Latrell Mitchell (pictured above) during the Indigenous All Stars war-cry at Queensland Country Bank Stadium in Townsville on Saturday
The Indigenous squad watched on patiently and respectively, and then responded in magnificent fashion, with superstar fullback Latrell Mitchell the focal point in the tribal dance.
Fox Sports commentator Andrew Voss personified the stirring mood, simply stating ‘wow’ after watching the Maori haka, before eventually composing himself.
He later declared ‘I don’t think I’ve seen better or more stirring than what I’ve just seen from the Maori All-Stars.’
Fellow commentator Michael Ennis was equally blown away, labelling the pre-game culture appreciations from the two sides ‘incredible’ and that he ‘had goosebumps’ watching on.
‘We start our season with so much passion. That war cry from both (teams) gives you goosebumps and drags you straight into the season,’ Ennis later added.
Retired great and now media identity Cooper Cronk felt the pre kick-off entertainment was the ‘best introduction to a game he had ever seen.’
Player turned commentator Greg Alexander summed up the thoughts of many when he proclaimed ‘you only have to listen to the players speak during the week about what it means to play for their people.’
On the field, a late Latrell Mitchell penalty goal secured a 10-10 draw for the Indigenous All Stars in what was a willing pre-season rugby league clash with the Maori All Stars in humid conditions.
The Maori All Stars squad shot out to a 10-2 lead, but the brilliance of Mitchell in the final quarter inspired his Indigenous teammates to a late surge towards fulltime.
After three memorable clashes between these two squads since 2019, the record now stands at one win apiece and one draw.
The Maori All Stars (pictured above) perform the Haka before the start of the NRL All Stars game on Saturday
Latrell Mitchell (pictured above right) is an inspiration to many Indigenous youth across Australia