Maroons make it seven straight

The Queensland Maroons have sealed a one-point victory over the New South Wales Blues, 21-20 to claim their seventh straight origin series at Suncorp Stadium in front of 52,437 fans.

The Blues capitalised to score first points with a penatly goal from Todd Carney to give NSW a two point lead after six minutes.

On numerous occasions the video referee was called upon to review the play. The visitors saw a four-pointer awarded to Brett Morris after he managed to ground the ball despite the best defensive efforts of Sam Thaiday.

The turning point in the first half was when Wests Tigers captain Robbie Farah took a knock to the head and lost possession. Following that, Corey Parker fought to keep the ball alive to gift the Maroons two consecutive tries.

Firstly, Darius Boyd powered over in the corner to beat Jarryd Hayne. In a rare moment, Johnathan Thurston failed to convert from the touchline. The second try was claimed by the little master himself, as JT firstly made a line-break - then backed it up with a try of his own.

A controversial moment during the first half of the contest saw a four-pointer awarded to Maroon centre Justin Hodges. Despite a number of replays, the big screen spun up the green lights for Hodges. The controversy surrounded a 'shepherd' play by Hodges as he ran behind his own player in Ben Hannant.

Just before the half time siren, Cameron Smith opted for a penalty goal to extend the lead to eight points. At this point the Maroons were well in control, 16-8 over the Blues at the break.

It didn't take long for NSW to fire, and fight their way back into the match. Robbie Farah crafted a pin-point grubber kick to the in goal for Brett Stewart to race through and grab another four-pointer for the series. Following Carney's conversion, Queensland held a two point lead 16-14 after seven minutes of the second half.

Johnathan Thurston took the tactical advantage with two penalties in the 50th and 63rd minutes to extend the Maroons lead to six points, taking the scoreline to 20-14.

A skillful passage of play from Josh Morris saw the Blues claw back into the contest with a try in the 71st minute. Morris overpowered Darius Boyd in the air to plant the Steeden down shy of the touch in goal line. Under a mountain of pressure, Todd Carney nailed the conversion from the touchline to lock the game at 20-all.

The hopes of the New South Wales faithful rose with the game in the balance and a real chance to stop the rot. However, it was dashed with a 40 metre field goal off the boot of Cooper Cronk in the 74th minute, giving the Maroons a one point advantage with six remaining.

Sadly, for the NSW hopeful the siren sounded before they could respond - the Maroons sealing a one-point victory over the visiting Blues, 21-20 at a sold out Suncorp Stadium. The shield stays in Queensland for a seventh straight Origin series, the 2-1 series scoreline in the favour of those north of the Tweed yet again.

Match Details
Queensland 21 defeated New South Wales 20
National Rugby League - State of Origin III - Wednesday July 4, 2012 8:00pm
Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Referee: Tony Archer and Ben Cummins
Video Referee: Steve Clark (assistant Russell Smith)
Touch Judges: Russell Turner and David Abood
Crowd: 52,437
Halftime: Queensland 16 New South Wales 8

Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:
3 Points - Greg Inglis
2 Points - Cooper Cronk (1 Field Goal)
1 Point - Nate Myles

Queensland (21)
Tries: Darius Boyd, Johnathan Thurston, Justin Hodges
Field Goals: Cameron Smith (0/1), Cooper Cronk (1/1)
Conversions: Johnathan Thurston (2/3)
Penalty Goals: Johnathan Thurston (2/2)

New South Wales (20)
Tries: Brett Morris, Josh Morris, Brett Stewart
Field Goals: Mitchell Pearce (0/1)
Conversions: Todd Carney (3/3)
Penalty Goals: Todd Carney (1/1)

LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary Welcome Rugby League fans to League Unlimited's coverage of the 2012 State of Origin Game III decider. We will have all the team news and live updates during the night. It's a massive night of footy so join us from 8PM with the kick off to the most anticipated Origin matches in it's history!
We are 30 minutes away from kick off here at Suncorp Stadium. Tonight you can join @LeagueUnlimited on Twitter. Be sure to tag your tweets with #Origin3 AND for you Queenlanders #7InARow OR for you New South Welshmen #uptheblues
Both sides are going through their final preparations in the sheds. We can confirm that both sides are without changes to the named line-ups. Before kick off here at Suncorp will we have the Australia National Anthem
Paul Gallen has emerged from the sheds as he leads his side out of the tunnel onto the sold out Suncorp Stadium.
The crowd sends out a massive cheer as the Maroon jerseys exit the tunnel. We will have the National Anthem in a moments time
Suncorp Stadium is on his feet as Darren Percival from the Voice performs the Australian National Anthem
1 min: WE ARE UNDERWAY with Cameron Smith kicking off for the Maroons. James Tamou taking the first hit up
1 min: Massive kick fro Jarryd Hayne sees Greg Inglis take it on the full and return it into the defence line.
1 min: Time off. We have our first fight! Issues with Brent Tate it seems. Everyone has come together
1 min: Penalty has gone to the Queensland Maroons.
3 min: Thurston puts a little kick to the in goal area which was collected by Hayne. However, he was unable to get out into the field of play. Line drop out for the Maroons
5 min: KNOCK ON! Great defence from the Blues, Cronk put a cross field kick in goal for Inglis to knock it out. 20 metre tap for the Blues.
5 min: Brett Morris has made a massive break downfield. On the back of it the Blues earn a penalty for QLD being offside on the goal line. Immediately all the fingers go up for the two points.
6 min: PENALTY GOAL
PENALTY GOAL! New South Wales Todd Carney slot the PENALTY GOAL to get the Blues first points of the night.
New South Wales 2-0
8 min: Todd Carney puts it on the toe to end the Blues set. Big kick down field sees the Maroons take it deep in their own half.
9 min: Robbie Farah stabs the kick downfield to the corner. Brent Tate took it short of the goal line before he threw a pass to Greg Inglis. He run out to the 20 metre line to meet the NSW blues defence.
10 min: Cooper Cronk tries the chip and chase but collected easily by Hayne in the middle of the park. Blues have the set on their 40 metre line.
11 min: Cameron Smith took a hand to the ball as James Tamou offloaded. the Blues have the ZERO tackle on the QLD 30 metre line.
12 min: Video Referee for the NSW Blues, Brett Morris dived for the line. Looking at grounding.
13 min: TRY
TRY! New South Wales
Brett Morris has darted into the defensive line to plant the ball down despite the efforts of Sam Thaiday. Todd Carney from out wide struck it beautifully to extend the lead
New South Wales 8-0
14 min: KNOCK ON! Robbie Farah has got between Nate Myles and Petero. He is in disneyland but will play on. Following the error, the Maroons have the ball on the ZERO TACKLE. Attacking 30 metres out.
15 min: Dane Nielsen took on the NSW Blues line and lost. He got caught on the last tackle short of the goal line. As a result the Blues will have the ball shy of the line with a play of the ball.
16 min: A strong defence from the Maroons to force Mitchell Pearce to kick on his 30 metre line to end the Blues set. Easily taken by the outside backs.
17 min: PENALTY! Tim Grant has been pinged for not clearing the ruck after the held call. The QLD side will have a set on the Blues 30 metre line.
19 min: TRY
TRY! Queensland
Corey Parker managed an offload in the tackle to link up with Cooper Cronk. He passed it wide to the left side to find Darius Boyd on the wing to beat Hayne to the line to score in the corner. Johnathan Thurston fails to convert from the touchline.
New South Wales 8-4
21 min: INTERCHANGE: Anthony WATMOUGH ON for James TAMOU OFF
23 min: Greg Inglis showing his power by fending off four Blues. But it all fell apart as Justin Hodges tried to through the pass around the back. The Blues have the ball through Anthony Watmough
24 min: PENALTY! The Blues earn a PENALTY for the Maroons being ruled offside at the ruck. The Blues find touch to give them their set starting on the 40 metre line. Penalty count stands at 2-all
24 min: INTERCHANGE: Ben CREAGH ON for Tim GRANT
26 min: Time off here. Ben Creagh is OUT cold as he dived between the legs of two Maroons defenders.
26 min: Ben Creagh has split open his head open and will come off the field immediately. Blood all over his head after the collision. With his injury, James Tamou returns to the field.
28 min: Massive defence from both side so far. 129 tackles for the Maroons, compared to the 125 of the Blues.
29 min: KNOCK ON! David Shillington took a poor pass and lost it cold. A scrum will pack down on the Blues 40 metre line. Tony Williams is warming up on the sideline ahead of his injection into this contest
30 min: INTERCHANGE: Tony WILLIAMS ON for Greg BIRD
33 min: TRY
TRY! Queensland Maroons
Johnathan Thurston has scored the Maroons second four-pointer after he made a break downfield. On the last tackle, Corey Parker again kept the ball alive to offload on the inside to Thurston to slip through.
Queensland 10-8
34 min: The Blues aren't helping their own cause with them kicking the ball out on the full from the restart. Not good signs here for the Blues. QLD have the penalty on half way
34 min: Video Referee for the Maroons. Looking at a possible obstruction. Justin Hodges is claiming the Maroons 3rd try.
36 min: TRY
TRY! Queensland Maroons
Justin Hodges has been awarded the try despite an obvious obstruction play. However, Hogdes' speed was always going to get over the line. Thurston with the conversion attempt extend the Maroons lead
Queensland 16-8
37 min: KNOCK ON! Ben Hannant has coughed up the ball in the tackle of Tony Williams. The Blues have the ball inside the QLD half
38 min: A big kick across the field from the Blues. Brent Tate reached for the ball in the contest with Brett Morris but unable to take it. Ball going touch in goal, so the Blues will have a line drop out before half time.
39 min: KNOCK ON! James Tamou has "lost" the ball in the tackle despite three Maroons helping the ball out. The Maroons will finish the set with the ball you would think
39 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT
Cameron Smith took a snap attempt at field goal but fell well short of the posts.
Queensland 16-8
40 min: HALF TIME here at Suncorp Stadium sees the Maroons take a 16-8 into the sheds over the NSW Blues. The second period of the first half has seen the Maroons dominate all aspects of the field. It will take a miracle for the Blues to fight out of this from this.
We are moments away from the second half getting underway with the NSW Blues returning out of the sheds
41 min: We are UNDERWAY in the second half here at Suncorp Stadium with the BLUES kicking off.
41 min: Thurston has come up with possession after the kick from the Blues hit the Qld side and was unable to clean up
43 min: KNOCK ON! Cooper Cronk has failed to take the pass and lost the ball. The Blues have the ball out of a scrum feed on the 20 metre line.
43 min: After suffering the head wound in the opening half, Ben Creagh will return into this match wearing head gear. He has suffered a 20 centimetre gash on his head.
45 min: Penalty against Sam Thaiday for a strip in the ruck on Tony Williams. The NSW Blues take a free kick and find touch on the QLD 40 metre line.
46 min: INTERCHANGE: Luke Lewis has come on for Beau Scott
47 min: Video Referee for the BLUES! Robbie has supplied Stewart with a great kcik
47 min: TRY
TRY! New South Wales Blues
Robbie Farah has supplied a beautiful kick to the in goal area to set up Brett Stewart to ground it short of the dead ball line. Todd Carney slot the goal from next to the posts
Queensland 16-14
48 min: A mistake from the kick restart gives the Maroons a chance to hit back with points deep in the Blues half on the zero tackle.
49 min: PENALTY! has gone to the Maroons for laying in the ruck.Cameron Smith will take the two points.
50 min: PENALTY GOAL
PENALTY GOAL! Queensland
Johnathan Thurston has nailed the two points from in front after the Blues conceded a penalty for not clearing the ruck.
Queensland 18-14
54 min: INTERCHANGE: Matt GILLETT has come on for the Maroons
55 min: Greg Inglis has been denied a try by the goal post pads. Wonderful fight by the Blues to save a try. Robbie Farah has jumped off the line to dive on the loose pass from Thurston.
56 min: The kick from the Blues has found touch to give the Maroons a scrum feed on the NSW 30 metre line.
59 min: A wayward pass has seen the ball go to ground. The Blues will get the scrum feed on the their 30 metre line. They need to power up and push up into the QLD half.
60 min: KNOCK ON! The Blues has coughed up possession again this time through Paul Gallen. The pressure is mounting here. Scrum feed here for the Maroons.
61 min: Penalty to the Maroons against Luke Lewis for not clearing the ruck fast enough for Tony Archers liking.
62 min: Time off here for a high shot from Tony Williams on Cooper Cronk. A penalty will be awarded here to QLD
63 min: PENALTY GOAL
PENALTY GOAL! Queensland
Johnathan Thurston slots the two points to make it a six point lead for the Maroons.
Queensland 20-14
66 min: A lucky play for the Blues. Todd Carney threw the ball back into the Maroons line and Matt Scott has ruled to have knocked on. The Blues have possession through a scrum feed on the 30 metre line
67 min: Luke Lewis has been ruled to firstly come up with the error to give the Maroons a scrum feed instead of the Blues despite Sam Thaiday knocking on.
68 min: OFFICIAL CROWD tonight at Suncorp Stadium: 52,437
70 min: VIDEO REFEREE FOR THE BLUES! JOSH MORRIS CLAIMING OFF A FARAH KICK!
71 min: TRY
TRY! New South Wales Blues
Josh Morris has scored a wonderful Blues try in the corner after a lovely kick from Robbie Farah. Todd Carney has NAILED THE KICK from the touchline
20 all
71 min: Brent Tate missed the ball and it rolled close to the line. Brett Morris with a great covering defence forces the Maroons to start their set in the 10 metre zone.
72 min: Cooper Cronk's kick is forced to be played at by Brett Morris in goal. He returns to the field off play to meet the Maroons defence on his 10 metre line.
73 min: Mitchell Pearce has stabbed the kick downfield and it went touch in goal. Queensland have the ball through Boyd on the 20 metre line for an optional restart.
74 min: FIELD GOAL
FIELD GOAL! Maroons
Cooper Cronk has nailed a 40 metre field goal to extend the Maroons to a ONE POINT lead
Queensland 21-20
75 min: Jarryd Hayne under the high ball as managed to hold onto the ball and the Blues will start their set deep in the QLD half.
76 min: Time off, 4 minutes remain. Josh Morris is down after a high tackle from Shillington.
76 min: PENALTY for the Blues after David Shillington took Josh Morris high. Shillington has been placed on a report.
77 min: KNOCK ON! Robbie Farah looked for the quick play of the ball and he lost it! Maroons will get a scrum feed on their 30 metre line.
77 min: A massive kick from Carney has given the Blues an extra 30 metres
79 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT
Mitchell Pearce has stabbed the kick and missed
Queensland 21-20
80 min: The siren has sounded here at Suncorp Stadium and the Maroons have claimed a seven straight Origin series win with a 21-20 win over the NSW Blues.

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