HomePosts Tagged "state of origin"

Tom Trbojevic scored a hat-trick as a dynamic New South Wales crushed Queensland 50-6 Wednesday to draw first blood in the

Three indigenous players have said they will refuse to sing Australia's national anthem at one of the country's blockbuster sporting

Queensland dug deep in Billy Slater's farewell State of Origin game to deny New South Wales a series clean sweep

New South Wales held off Queensland to win only their second State of Origin rugby league series in 13 years

A New South Wales side featuring 11 debutants took first blood in Australia's State of Origin rugby league series with an

Holders Queensland will rely on the Melbourne Storm ‘spine’ to give the Maroons victory in Wednesday’s State of Origin rugby league series decider against New South Wales in Brisbane.

Queensland have won 10 of the last 11 fiercely-fought interstate series and must do without injured mercurial Test pivot Johnathan Thurston and Test back Darius Boyd to clinch another one.

Thurston landed a pressure sideline conversion to crown a magnificent 18-16 comeback victory over the Blues last month to keep the series alive, but afterwards was ruled out for the rest of the season with a shoulder injury.

The Maroons have named debutant Cameron Munster as Thurston’s replacement at stand-off, implanting the steely Melbourne Storm club ‘spine’ into the Queensland starting line-up.

Queensland will have skipper Cameron Smith at hooker along with his fellow Storm teammates Cooper Cronk at scrum-half, Munster at stand-off and Billy Slater at fullback along with Will Chambers in the centres.

“He’s playing with them every week these guys and understands their game,” Maroons coach Kevin Walters said after selecting Munster at No.6.

“Obviously the spine is a big part of what we do and certainly Cameron, Cooper and Billy are a major part of that.”

Smith, Cronk and Slater play an influential role in the Queensland team, with their innate understanding of attacking plays paramount to the Maroons’ chances.

Slater and Cronk are expected to make an announcement on their Origin futures after Wednesday’s crunch game.

“Hopefully we’ll find out after this series is done where Cooper’s at for next year, Bill’s a bit different,” Smith said.

“I think he’s very keen to play on, it’s just whether he feels his body’s up to it.

“I try to take the emotion out of it. It’s probably one of the biggest games we have been involved in, but we have to get a job done,” he added.

After amassing a record 41 Origins – including 17 as skipper – Smith said this year’s title would be his most enjoyable.

“It’d be the most satisfying, no doubt about that given the injuries we’ve had and the personnel that are unavailable,” he said.

The Blues are bidding to clinch their first Origin series since 2014 after decisively winning the opening game 28-4 in Brisbane.

Laurie Daley is in line to become only the second NSW coach after Phil Gould to claim more than one series triumph for NSW.

Daley has named an unchanged side, although skipper and back-rower Boyd Cordner is battling a calf injury to be ready in time for the match.

Queensland chose debutants Cameron Munster and Ben Hunt on Monday but left out the in-form Daly Cherry-Evans for next week's

New South Wales posted their biggest win in Brisbane with a commanding 28-4 victory over holders Queensland in the State