Bevo dons maroon for State of Origin insights

Ultimately it was New South Wales far superior over their Queensland counterparts, with pressure now being placed on the Maroons selectors after the decision the leave out State of Origin legend Billy Slater backfired spectacularly with Darius Boyd lodging in a woeful defensive performance and a lacklustre display from Justin O'Neill.

"A couple of times we got close to scoring, but they somehow found a body there, particularly the Matt Gillett one", Walters said.

A Queensland rugby league source confirmed Beveridge was welcomed into the inner-sanctum of the team's coaching unit on match night, including all the pre-match and post-game meetings.

The Blues were installed as bookies favourites for game one in Brisbane for the first time since 2005 - and NSW didn't like it one bit. "When we do get the big moments we just want to make them count and we did that well, but it's only one game".

With a try, a try assist, 12 tackle breaks, two offloads, two line breaks and 207 run metres Tedesco embodied perfectly this courageous new Blues world where effort and skill are displayed in equally high measures.

WESTERN Bulldogs premiership coach Luke Beveridge has spent the past few days embedded with Queensland's State of Origin rugby league team.

The fifth-year Blues mentor denied the Maroons' stranglehold on the interstate shield - they've claimed 10 of the past 11 series - was loosening.

"I thought in the first half we competed really well, but there were some telling signs", he said.

"Just my try", he said.

For the next thirty minutes, both sides played near flawless footy, with errors scarce and impenetrable defence seeing the scoreline still at 6-0 after 35 minutes.

"NSW just didn't give us anything".

Fifita ran amok in the first half, running for 119m to hand NSW a 12-4 halftime lead.

Thurston's likely return from a shoulder injury for Origin II in Sydney on June 21st and speculation Slater may join him already has Daley wary of another Maroons ambush.

The VB Blues' fullback made not one but two try-saving tackles in the second half - when it appeared more hard for the Maroons NOT to score than actually cross for a four-pointer.

And that is now the challenge that faces a Queensland team caught between defending the empire they have created and looking for ways to forge a new future.

One Maroons official joked to AFL.com.au, "He (Beveridge) is never welcome back mate, because we lost".

  • Zachary Reyes