State of Origin Preview - NSW v QLD (Game II)

15-06-2011 12:00AM at ANZ Stadium

Referee: Shayne Hayne and Ben Cummins
Touch Judges: Paul Holland and Daniel Eastwood
Referee: Sean Hampstead and Russell Smith

Combinations, Cohesion, Courage, Class and the Count. This is what will decide game 2 of the 2011 State of Origin series at ANZ Stadium on Wednesday night.

Combinations in defence can obviously make or break a team's performance. The Blues, as is their tradition, have made 8 positional changes from their game 1 loss and most importantly, to a wing/centre combination. Jarryd Hayne joins debutant Will Hopoate on the left side for NSW and if history has taught us anything, they will need at least one game together to get this right. The Blues don't have 1 game.

Cohesion falls under the same umbrella; the Blues will hear a different voice behind them in defence as Anthony Minichiello makes his return to the game's biggest arena. A great story for The Count but once again this change will affect cohesion. Courage... In the Rugby League world, nobody typifies this word more than Minichiello. New South Wales will have plenty of it, especially if they have to defend their try line as often as game 1 which is highly likely.

Class. This is where the Queenslanders simply cannot be touched. Blues fans are probably sick of hearing their names at this stage but as always, the Maroons success will start with Cam Smith and his two front rowers in Civoniceva and Scott; and finish with Lockyer and.... hang on..... We ARE sick of hearing their names. Whoever they are, they will flourish in the wet weather conditions, and thrive in the familiar position of a series clinching game.

Expect improved performances from Mitchell Pearce and Jamie Soward as their combination grows. Expect a master class in wet weather positional play by all four halves. Expect a few more penalties in this game after both sides complained about game 1 ruck speed. Expect another fiery and physical battle in Rugby League's version of all out war and finally, don't expect me to tip against the Blues. This will be another intense and amazing chapter in Origin so sit tight and enjoy.

My Man of the Match Prediction: Matt Scott (Maroons)
My Tip: An all in brawl in the first 5 minutes. 4 players sent to the sin bin and Queensland win...... oops (still can't do it)... NSW 8-6.

The Teams

  New South Wales    Queensland 
No Suspensions

No Injuries
1. Anthony Minichiello Fullback 1. Billy Slater
2. Jarryd Hayne Wing 2. Darius Boyd
3. Mark Gasnier Centre 3. Dane Nielsen
4. William Hopoate Centre 4. Greg Inglis
5. Akuila Uate Wing 5. Jharal Yow Yeh
6. Jamie Soward Five Eighth 6. Darren Lockyer
7. Mitchell Pearce Halfback 7. Johnathan Thurston
8. Paul Gallen Prop 8. Matthew Scott
9. Michael Ennis Hooker 9. Cameron Smith
10. Tim Mannah Prop 10. Petero Civoniceva
11. Beau Scott Second Row 11. Nate Myles
12. Ben Creagh Second Row 12. Sam Thaiday
13. Greg Bird Lock 13. Ashley Harrison
14. Trent Merrin Interchange 14. Cooper Cronk
15. Luke Lewis Interchange 15. Corey Parker
16. Kurt Gidley Interchange 16. Dave Taylor
17. Anthony Watmough Interchange 17. Ben Hannant
No Suspensions

No Injuries

Head to Head

2011 State of Origin I Suncorp Stadium Queensland 16-12
2010 State of Origin Game 3 2010 ANZ Stadium, Sydney Queensland 23-18
2010 State of Origin Game 2 2010 Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane Queensland 34-6
2010 State of Origin Game 1 2010 ANZ Stadium Queensland 28-24
2009 State of Origin 3 Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane New South Wales 28-16

The Odds

Other Games this Round