The Maroons are trotting out a pair of fresh faces for the should-be-a-slobberknocker Origin III next week, with selectors opting for youth to replace injured veterans.
Johnathan Thurston leaves the side, for possibly the last time, thanks to a shoulder knocked into virtual smithereens. Joining him on the sidelines for the heavyweight decider is Broncos centre Darius Boyd, who smashed his thumb up and will not get up in time for the game next week.
In their place, the Maroons have announced that Ben Hunt will cap off a meteoric rise through the ranks by making his Origin debut, getting the nod ahead of Daly Cherry-Evans. Good Rocky boy Cameron Munster will also step into the lineup for the first time in his career, as QLD looks to cap off a remarkable comeback series win over the cursed Blues.
— NRL (@NRL) July 3, 2017
Coach Kevin Walters has remained tight-lipped on which of the two will step into Thurston’s number six jersey at five-eighth, preferring to leave position decisions until the new-look squad has had time to assemble.
“We’ll sort that out through the next couple of days. It’s probably better that we talk to our players first and see where we go to from there. It’s more just getting them together and getting them relaxed as we can be.”
Whichever of Munster and Hunt does not lineup at half will instead take the field in Boyd’s left centre spot.
The only other change to the lineup that rinsed NSW in an enthralling game two comes in the form of Michael Morgan being elevated to the starting lineup.
Game III returns to Lang Park Wednesday week, July 12th.
Source: Fox Sports.
Photo: Ryan Pierse/Getty.