FOR a moment, millions had their eyes transfixed on the sensational Monica Oriel as she sang the national anthem in front of some 78,000 cricket fans at the Melbourne Cricket Grounds.
From her humble beginnings in Wauchope, Oriel has finally made her way on to the world stage with a stellar performance of Australia’s most precious song on Boxing Day.
The self-confessed cricket-lover told the Port News singing at the MCG was a dream come true.
Her father David Oriel said his daughter’s awe-inspiring performance was very emotional to watch.
“You just feel so proud,” Mr Oriel said. “If you’ve got any tears in you, your heart fills up and pushes them out. She was absolutely amazing,” he said.
“Any parent who has a child, who has tried so hard and been so patient... you just know - well it’s been a long, hard, road but by golly you’ve done well.
The road to her first major career milestone has not been easy for his talented 24-year-old daughter, Mr Oriel said.
But her incredible performance finally showcased her talent to the world.
“I don’t know what comes after being so proud - probably a heart attack,” David joked.
Oriel’s Facebook page was covered in adoration from fans and the local public, who were touched and very proud of her performance.