2010 State of Origin Game 1 – QLD Team Rundown

May 19th, 2010

Australian footy fans’ favourite time of year is fast approaching as the 2010 Harvey Norman State of Origin opener is set to play out next Wednesday night at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium.

In anticipation of the thrilling clash between the mighty Maroons and the big Blues, the XXXX Queensland team was announced this week.

An impressive squad of the most celebrated Queenslanders has been named as the Maroons seek the right combination for a fifth straight Origin series win.

But this year joining the veterans, selectors have also thrown two Origin rookies into the mix hoping they will give Queensland the X-factor they need to maintain their dominance in the State v State, Mate v Mate blockbuster.

Making their Origin debuts are David Taylor (No. 17) and Melbourne halfback Cooper Cronk (No. 14) who will be ready to inject some fresh talent and manoeuvres into the mix when they come off the bench.

The legendary Darren Lockyer will again captain the Queenslanders when he appears in his 31st State of Origin match on May 26.

Earlier in the season Lockyer announced he would proudly make himself available for rep duties this year despite the dismal early form of his Broncos team. Now with a couple of impressive wins under their belt, Brisbane are sure to feel the pressure as not only Lockyer but two of their other core players have made the Maroons team this year.

Inspirational playmaker Lockyer will be joined on field by Israel Folau and Sam Thiaday. Folau has controversially been appointed on the left wing for game one despite his indecision regarding his future in the NRL.

Regardless of the debate about whether Folau should have been awarded the No. 5 Maroon’s jersey as he considers moving to a rival code, there is little doubt that the 21-year-old with six Origin matches under his belt will be an instrumental part of the Queensland attack.

While there has been a lot of talk about the size and physicality of the Blues line-up this year, Queensland too boast plenty of big boys ready to take them on too.

The Storm’s Goliath Greg Inglis and Willie Tonga have been appointed the Queensland centres, facing off against Cooper and Tahu from the Blues side.

There is some concern surrounding the fitness of respected hooker Cameron Smith for the inaugural match following his elbow injury sustained in the Kangaroos v Kiwis test match, and with appointed halfback Johnathan Thurston touch and go after his own ongoing injury issues this season, it might be the rookies stepping up to help the legends.

Smith has played in 19 successive Origin matches, but will not sacrifice the success of the Queenslanders just to keep up this impressive streak while closing in on former Maroons great Gary Larson’s 24 straight Origin games record.

Manly’s hooker Matt Ballin is Queensland’s second-choice hooker, in training with the Maroons until a decision on whether the recovering Smith will play is made over the weekend.

No surprises with Billy Slater filling the fullback position, while powerhouse Petero Civoniceva returns as prop.

State of Origin Betting has the breaking news in the lead up to game one, and Rugby League fans can also keep track of the standard season matches for the 2010 NRL Telstra Premiership at NRLleague.

View the official NSW Blues team list for game one.

Betting on this year’s State of Origin is now open so get behind your team now and make some money in the process with Ladbrokes.com.au!

2010 State of Origin Game 1 – XXXX QLD Maroons Team:

1. Billy Slater (Melbourne Storm)

2. Darius Boyd (St George Illawarra Dragons)

3. Greg Inglis (Melbourne Storm)

4. Willie Tonga (North Queensland Cowboys)

5. Israel Folau (Brisbane Broncos)

6. Darren Lockyer (c) (Brisbane Broncos)

7. Johnathan Thurston (North Queensland Cowboys)

8. Matthew Scott (North Queensland Cowboys)

9. Cameron Smith (Melbourne Storm)

10. Petero Civoniceva (Penrith Panthers)

11. Nate Myles (Sydney Roosters)

12. Sam Thaiday (Brisbane Broncos)

13. Ashley Harrison (Gold Coast Titans)

Interchange:

14. Cooper Cronk (Melbourne Storm)

15. David Shillington (Canberra Raiders)

16. Neville Costigan (St George Illawarra Dragons)

17. David Taylor (South Sydney Rabbitohs)

Reserve:

18. Ben Te’o

Coach:

Mal Meninga