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We all know that Origin is more than just a game.

Weve heard the pre-game Gus Gould rant, the Ray Warren intros and the Peter Sterling stats we know what it means to pull on the jumper and the crowd behind you every step of the way.

We know its time to end the hoodoo, we know its time that those north of the border were brought to halt and we all know its our time.

However our very own Mitchell Pearce has taken it to a whole new level after describing it as a religion yesterday, when the Blues halfback caught up with just a day out from the biggest game in his Origin career.

You dont realise how much it means to people and how much they love it, Junior said, after being asked how the build up to this game had been different to any other.

Having people come up to you and wishing you the best, even if youre just sitting in a cafe or walking down the street, its been unbelievable.

Its been absolutely crazy, its hard to describe. Its as if its a religion to people, it just means that much.

And so it should Mitchell. After seven long years, our next step is praying.

But do we need to panic? Are we facing eight straight defeats? Can you and the boys in Blue end this Maroon dynasty?

Typically, the vice-captain wasnt interested in answering those questions. Like he does week in and week out for his beloved Tricolours, Pearce is focussing on what he can control. No matter how loud the critics may be.

So much goes on and is said inside these four walls that we know what we need to do and what we need to work on as a team.

The criticism is hard to hear, especially when its only targeted at one or two people, but thats a part of it and we cant let it faze us.

We just need to focus on turning our defensive sets into our attacking structures and, like in Game I, we just need to control the pace of the game.

We spoke all the right stuff leading into Game II but worried too much about the wrong things at the wrong times.

Weve been put in a position now where weve been a part of two different scenarios in two different games, which has given us good practice in both and allows us to be ready for whatever game presents itself tonight.

And what about sharing the moment with good mate and fellow vice-captain Boyd Cordner?

Hows our boy Cheeky settled in, Junior?

Boyds looked like a seasoned veteran since he arrived.

I was stoked to have him come into camp and he deserves it so much, hes made for this kind of thing.

You just dont notice him around, which is a good thing. Its like hes been doing it forever.

And what about the role hell play, can you give us a hint?

He wont just play a role, hell be a standout.

Hes not the only Rooster youll stand alongside at the singing of the anthem tonight, with Jenko and your room mate Jimmy there too. Hows the week been bunking down with the BBQ King?

He goes alright, other than the snoring which is pretty bad. I have to sneak off and sleep in the spare room some nights to make sure I get a decent sleep, he said grinning.

And those nude squats he caught you doing in camp before the last match, are they are a part of the routine now?

Lets clear this up. He walked into the bathroom and I was leaning down to pick something up and he took it as me doing nude squats.

I definitely dont do them, but I dont think itd be that bad an image. Would it? he said, with a laugh.

We might leave it there on that and maybe go back to the quartet of Tricolours representatives out there tonight alongside you. Have any of the other boys been in touch?

I caught up with Aidan and Friendy the other day for brekky and Im pretty sure even they want to see the Blues win now.


Well, maybe not... but theyve been fantastic, like everyone has. Were a close group and there all supportive of each of us.

At the end of the day, myself and all the other Rooster boys involved in this game have the Club to thank for the opportunity.

Good Club form has seen us all get this chance and were representing everyone back at the Roosters from the players, coaches and staff to the Members and fans, which is something were proud to be doing.

Mitchell, we couldnt be prouder of each of you.

Rip in and REPRESENT, well be cheering you on!
Acknowledgement of Country

Sydney Roosters respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.