Minichiello in doubt for Origin II

Manly fullback Brett Stewart will be rushed into the NSW State of Origin squad this morning with Anthony Minichiello in doubt for tomorrow night's Origin II with a back injury.

Minichiello complained of back soreness late last night and will be assessed by Blues' medical staff again today. Stewart will join the camp for training at 11am today and will make his Origin debut if called in for the Blues' must-win clash at Telstra Stadium.

The 22-year-old has scored eight tries in the Sea Eagles' impressive start to the 2007 season. Roosters fullback Minichiello spent most of the 2006 season sidelined with a back injury and had similar injury concerns in the lead-up to Queensland's 25-18 game one win in Brisbane last month.

Meanwhile, the Queensland camp has called Brisbane Broncos forward Dane Carlaw into the team as 18th man in case of injury.

Elsewhere, Sam Thaiday's painful season has plunged to new depths after suffering a worrying ankle injury in his lower-grade comeback.

Brisbane expects to be without the barnstorming Test and Queensland player for up to six weeks due to an ankle strain.

Playing for the Aspley Broncos in his Queensland Cup return from a cheekbone fracture at the weekend, Thaiday sustained the injury when he was caught in a tackle and twisted his ankle.

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