NSW claim first blood in State of Origin opener


"That was a really thorough performance from the Blues".

"They came into the camp with a lot of confidence".

Pearce managed to get in another try for the Blues just before the end of the first half, with another successful conversion from Maloney.

There is also the chance Mitchell Pearce may not back up for the Roosters when they host the Broncos at Allianz Stadium this Saturday night, owing to the concussion he suffered in the shoulder charge by Will Chambers ten minutes into the second half, which ended his night early.

Origin matches tend to have stronger ratings in games two or three when more is on the line.

Fifita treated the Origin arena like an under-8s carnival in the first 40 minutes, swatting away some of the game's greatest ever players with disdain as he amassed 119 metres with nine tackle busts in 24 minutes of game-time, finishing with 175 metres and a man-of-the-match nod from the Australian selectors that many thought he should have received in the 2016 Grand Final.

Pearce did a couple of good things and a couple of bad things in the first half.

Fifita steamrolled through the middle to run 175m with David Klemmer (171m), NSW skipper Boyd Cordner (151m) and Aaron Woods (136m) also proving a handful.

The first half was old school Origin. Huge hits. Forwards dominating.

They couldn't take this one off Andrew Fifita. One of his barging runs led to the first try.

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New South Wales were too good for Queensland in Origin I.

The Maroons had another look in when Cronk tried his luck on the other side, putting Aidan Guerra through a hole.

After a flying Corey Oates had failed to cleanly ground a fifth-minute grubber from Maroons team-mate Darius Boyd, the Blues opened the scoring in the next set. Everything did for NSW. Jarryd Hayne, 5. Brett Morris, 6.

New South Wales have one hand on the State of Origin shield following an impressive 28-4 victory over Queensland in Game 1 of the 2017 series at Suncorp Stadium last night.

"There's decisions to be made around that", Cronk said of a possible return for Slater.

But the rest of the team couldn't lift to their level.

Queensland started fast, were given the first penalty after four minutes, and nearly went over for the first try soon after as Corey Oates tried in vain to claw back a searching kick in the far left corner. They achieved this with a fantastic team ethic, and with superstars across the field.

That's what worked for Meninga: keep the champion core, refresh and revitalise the team by gradually and strategically phasing out expendable players with younger, in-form replacements. But they're no longer the latter - although the return of the injured Johnathan Thurston in match two in Sydney will undoubtedly help.

I thought I did my job, I got the starting gig I always wanted. You'd imagine that the blokes who have to tackle him can. "We had a big emphasis on defense during the week".

"You'll find the Brisbane audience dropped off a bit in the second half around that 50 to 55 minute mark".