"Deutschland Uber Alles" – Germany above everything – was ditched from the anthem after the defeat of Hitler in 1945.
But it made an embarrassing comeback on Saturday during opening ceremonies of the Fed Cup in Hawaii tournament when it was crooned by someone singing from the wrong song sheet.
The unfortunate soloist sang the old words rather than ‘Unity and justice and freedom for the German fatherland’.
Fed Cup officials have apologised to Germany after a Nazi-era verse of the national anthem was sung
Alison Riske of the United States
It was sung before the match between German Andrea Petkovic and Alison Riske of the United States.
I've never felt more disrespected in my whole life
Petkovic, who was born in Bosnia, said in the German-speaking portion of her press conference that she considered walking off the court as the anthem went on.
"I thought it was the epitome of ignorance, and I've never felt more disrespected in my whole life, let alone in Fed Cup, and I've played Fed Cup for 13 years now and it is the worst thing that has ever happened to me," Petkovic said after losing the match.
The United States Tennis Association quickly apologised, saying: "The USTA extends its sincerest apologies to the German Fed Cup team and all of its fans for the performance of an outdated national anthem prior to today's Fed Cup competition.
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"In no way did we mean any disrespect. This mistake will not occur again, and the correct anthem will be performed for the remainder of this first-round tie."
Riske was apologetic in her press conference.
"As it was happening, obviously, we have no idea," Riske said. "But news got around to us and it's extremely unfortunate. We have nothing but respect for the German team and obviously that will not happen again."
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