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Origin I player ratings: NSW Blues

Player ratings for the NSW Blues team in their State of Origin I clash with the Queensland Maroons at Adelaide Oval.

1. James Tedesco: A typically busy Tedesco performance, constantly supporting through the middle, threatening from the back and busting tackles at will. Had 150 metres by half-time and doubled that by full-time, with nine busts. 7.5/10

2. Daniel Tupou: Hugely busy game and one of the top yardage men from either side, producing plenty of big runs and over 200 metres. However one stray offload was a huge blot on his copybook, going to ground for Munster's game-breaking try. 6.5

3. Clint Gutherson: Looked at home in sky blue even before the game started. Had no problems adjusting to defending at centre besides one monster fend from Kurt Capewell leading to AJ Brimson's try, though that miss was a big one. Was strong from the backfield and helped set up both Addo-Carr tries. 6

4. Jack Wighton: Produced some strong carries racking up almost 180 metres but had serious problems trying to handle Maroons sensation Dane Gagai, and was beaten in the lead up to the Coates try. Had a game-high eight missed tackles. Will be tough to pick him at centre for game two. 3

5. Josh Addo-Carr: Shifted to his non-preferred side to accommodate the Roosters' left edge contingent but you wouldn't know it. Produced some monumental defensive reads, bagged two well-earned tries and almost had a third. Arguably the Blues' best from the wing. 8.5

Addo-Carr gets his double and the Blues have hope

6. Luke Keary: Looked the more comfortable of the two Blues halves but wasn't able to provide much. Some dangerous runs but not much to show for it in the end. 5.5

7. Nathan Cleary: Not his best. Produced a couple of good kicks but far too many ordinary ones and struggled to provide much direction or impetus for his side. 4

8. Daniel Saifiti: Utterly ferocious first spell, with some monster hits and carries, although he gave away a couple of offside penalties with over-eagerness. Lifted his team when they badly needed it in his second spell but it wasn't quite enough. 8.5

9. Damien Cook: Unusually scratchy start, dropping the kick-off and throwing some poor passes, but recovered with a brilliant solo try. Made a joint team high 52 tackles but wasn't as big a threat in the second half as he could have been. 7

10. Junior Paulo: Was on Origin debut but you wouldn't know it. Brought his club form with a strong first spell including a couple of offloads. Brought back once NSW got into trouble but wasn't able to replicate his first spell as Queensland applied the pressure. 6

NSW weather the storm then strike through Cook

11. Boyd Cordner: Questions may be asked about whether he should have returned from an early HIA but no questions will be asked about his determination or passion for the Blues, with countless tough carries into the teeth of the Maroons defence for 125 metres – the most of any Blues forward. 6.5

12. Tyson Frizell: Understated game but superb defensively on the right edge with 43 tackles. 7

13. Jake Trbojevic: Running at Jake Trbojevic remains akin to running at the world's biggest bag of cement. He stops them and he drops them. Passing game through the middle added another dimension to the Blues as well. Played all bar six minutes of the contest for over 50 tackles and just one missed. 8

Interchange

14. Cody Walker: Brought on in a sort of ball-playing lock type role for the final 20 minutes. Was constantly dangerous but unable to conjure the miracle NSW needed by that stage. 5

15. Payne Haas: Oddly given just 26 minutes despite one of the biggest motors in the NRL but was reliable while on field with 13 tackles (none missed) and seven big carries. 5

16. Cameron Murray: Suffered a nasty leg injury a couple of minutes into his spell and could not return, with just one carry and no tackles in that time. N/A

17. Angus Crichton: His 45 minutes off the bench were mostly in the middle, with 80 metres and 30 tackles providing some impact. 5.5

 

The views in this article do not necessarily express the opinions of the NRL, ARLC, NRL clubs or state associations.

 

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