Kangaroos welcome war dance return

A war dance may be adopted by the Kangaroos sooner rather than later after captain Cameron Smith threw his weight behind the “lost” pre-match ritual’s return.

The Australian rugby league team have not performed the dance since the 1967-68 tour of France.

But Smith revealed on the eve of the All Stars clash in Brisbane he hoped to discuss the topic with the Kangaroos hierarchy.

A war dance goal celebration by Sydney captain Adam Goodes last year shocked Carlton supporters during the AFL Indigenous round.

Proud Aborigine Goodes was forced to stand down in round 18 last year after being incessantly booed by crowds.

But the Greg Inglis-led Indigenous team’s war dance conceived by the players that was unveiled last year was a standout of the 2015 NRL All Stars showcase.

Smith missed a chance to discuss a Kangaroos pre-game ritual return with Inglis during this week’s packed All Stars schedule.

However, the World All Stars captain confirmed he would pursue the concept with the Kangaroos after urging from NRL Indigenous welfare official Dean Widders.

“I think the war dance is a great thing,” Smith said before lining up against Indigenous captain Inglis on Saturday night in Brisbane.

“I’ve been opposite the Haka many times. It’s a way of celebrating their heritage and their traditions.

“It’s great and I know there is a bit of talk about trying to reintroduce something like it in the Kangaroos team so that might come up in discussions in the future.

“I don’t make the decisions but I’d be more than happy to have a discussion with all the other members and obviously the coaching staff as well.

“It has been used a long time ago and it has been lost to the team over the years – it’s certainly something we can all talk about.”

Organisers of the 2017 World Cup are believed to be keen for the Kangaroos to display a war dance at the tournament – 50 years after it was last performed.

Besides New Zealand’s Haka, Tonga (Sipi Tau) and Samoa (Siva Tau) also perform popular pre-match rituals.

Inglis said it would be a career highlight if he was able to perform the war dance in the green and gold.

“Like Smithy said, that’s the dance we want to take further, sit around and chat about it being introduced back into the Kangaroos side,” he said.

“It would be very special but there are steps to be taken to get there.

“You have to talk to the right people and the playing group.

“It’s taking steps and knocking walls down.

“I’d love to see it and would take great pride in it.”

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