Morning wrap

Steve Clark will tonight become only the third person to referee 300 first grade rugby league games when he controls Canberra's NRL match against St George Illawarra at Canberra Stadium.

Only now retired whistleblowers Bill Harrigan, with a total of 393 games, and Col Pearce with 341, have reached the 300 game milestone before. Clark, who made his debut in 1992, concedes that the ambition he had back then to one day referee a grand final burns as brightly now as it did then.

He has come close but has yet to achieve that.

Meanwhile, former Origin enforcer Steve Roach has called on NSW selectors to instil some mongrel into the Blues pack or risk a repeat of Wednesday's game one surrender.

The Blues forwards were powerless to stop their Queensland counterparts, led by front-row veterans Steve Price and Petero Civoniceva, who launched a stunning second half comeback to take the series opener. ROACH has called for in-form Cronulla duo Greg Bird and Paul Gallen to be thrown into Origin II on June 13 at Telstra Stadium.

Returning Bulldogs prop Mark O'Meley has vowed to step up in the absence of injured team-mate Willie Mason's for tonight's NRL clash with North Queensland in Brisbane. The inspirational Mason has been ruled out for up to two weeks with a hamstring injury sustained in the Blues' loss to Queensland on Wednesday night.

The battling Bulldogs other NSW representative Andrew Ryan has been cleared to play. In tonight's other game, Canberra host St George Illawarra.