Here we fucken go, mates. It’s getting gloriously close to State of Origin time, and Queensland coach Kevin Walters has wasted little time in ratcheting the bloodlust up to 11 ahead of Origin 1 next week.
In an extraordinary press conference following the Maroons’ squad announcement this morning, Walters fired the first shot in this year’s war of words between the Maroons and the Blues, ahead of the 2019 instalment of Australia’s most heated sporting rivalry, declaring the Queensland side selected will “put on a performance everyone can be proud of” before ominously declaring “it’s on.”
This Queensland team is going to be so prepared for this match, we’re playing at home, and we’re going to put on a performance that everyone can be proud of. The players, the fans, the sponsors… it’s on.
It’s a game we expect to win. We’ve picked a great side.
We are ready. This is war.
Walters has named three debutants in a new-look Maroons squad that will field a side without any of Greg Inglis, Billy Slater, Cameron Smith, Johnathan Thurston, or Cooper Cronk for the first time in modern memory.
Brisbane Broncos forwards David Fifita and Joe Ofahengaue, along with Wests Tigers fullback Moses Mbye will gain their breakthrough caps for Queensland, while Coen Hess, Jarrod Wallace, and Gavin Cooper have all failed to retain their spot after last year’s disappointing loss to New South Wales.
Remarkably, Walters declared Daly Cherry-Evans ready to play, naming him to play despite missing a month of football due to a syndesmosis injury copped in Round 7 of the NRL season. DCE is expected to be named the new captain of Queensland tonight following Greg Inglis’ retirement.
The Queensland Maroons team for Game 1 is in!— NRL on Nine (@NRLonNine) May 26, 2019
How will they go? ????
READ: https://t.co/Li1SvpCevj#9WWOS #Origin pic.twitter.com/9GHp4AIARn
Meanwhile NSW coach Brad Fittler has been forced to name five debutants in a weakened Blues side that has been ravaged by injury, including a heavy concussion to Tyson Frizzel over the weekend who remains in the side for the time being, but will have to pass concussion protocol in order to take the field.
Freddy has announced five debutants for the Blues for Game 1! Thoughts? ????#Origin #9WWOS pic.twitter.com/vye4IDSAS9— NRL on Nine (@NRLonNine) May 26, 2019
Game 1 of the 2019 State of Origin goes down next Wednesday night, June 5th, from Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.
It’s bloody on, mates.
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