'I've never seen it': Maroons drama sets scene for Origin I

‌The Blues lost Pearce and Queensland Anthony Milford after some separate heavy contact in the same passage of play 30 minutes from full-time but it in no way slowed the unrelenting momentum of the Blues who fed off the energy of Wade Graham, Jack Bird and David Klemmer.

"What he needs to do is focus on two things that make him a really good player and concentrate on that", said Cronk.

I think it's a case of looking at who's not there for the Maroons rather than who is and there is an obvious chink of light for the Blues.

"He just has to do what he's been doing at club level, playing good solid footy, running hard and hitting blokes and I'm sure if he does that he'll play a good game".

Like his father, Dylan has established himself as one of the most brutal defenders in the NRL, making a point of picking out the biggest, baddest hombre on the other side of the field and sitting them fair on their backsides.

Daley has warned his team about the pride of the wounded Maroons.

"They'll do it again, they'll come up with something that tries to gel them all together and bring them all together. and go out there and play well".

New South Wales posted their biggest win in Brisbane with a commanding 28-4 victory over holders Queensland in the State of Origin rugby league series-opener on Wednesday.

Despite losing 10 of the last 11 series, the Blues were backed by many to prevail at Suncorp Stadium, particularly with inspirational Maroons half-back Johnathan Thurston missing his first Origin match since 2004 due to injury. They like it when people are starting to doubt them.

"We don't know, it could be their last", Walters said of his Origin veterans.

CALLS for their Queensland axing have been echoing throughout the state nearly from the season kick-off but out-of-form quartet Jacob Lillyman, Justin O'Neill, Aidan Guerra and Nate Myles are adamant they will let no one down when they don a maroon jersey on Wednesday night.

But experience will be key for Kevin Walters' men against the Blues and these Queensland warriors are certain they can do the job.

Queensland started brightly and the Bunker was called in to review a possible try to winger Corey Oates in the fifth minute but the Blues began to assert their dominance on the back of a devastating opening spell from front rowers Fifita and Woods. "But in Origin, it shouldn't be about surprises, you expect the opposition to front up and be ready to go and that's what we've got to do".

  • Julie Sanders