Queensland Maroons have captured another State of Origin victory following their win over the New South Wales Blues at Adelaide on Wednesday night. While the entire team put on a great performance, some players stood out more than others.
The New South Wales Blues, unfortunately, couldn’t keep up with their opponents this time around. Despite their efforts, only a few players were able to make a significant impact. Among these is James Tedesco, who earned a 6.5 rating. While he had many involvements, he missed a considerable chance to set up a try when he held up near the line with Josh Addo-Carr unmarked outside him.
Brian To’o, who had a remarkable performance, secured a prominent 7.5 rating. He produced a couple of trademark tough carries despite the team having little early ball. Stephen Crichton was another notable performer with a 6.5 rating, having scored a crucial try and even just shaded against opposing centre Valentine Holmes.
Tom Trbojevic received a 6.5 rating, charged like a prop forward, and took the first hit-up of the game. Still, he wasn’t as dominant as he was in past series and got concussed late. Josh Addo-Carr was given a 5 rating as he wasn’t able to do much and was overshadowed by Murray Taulagi.
Jarome Luai earned a 6.5 rating, providing two try assists, which was enough to silence critics who argued that Nico Hynes should have got the No.6 jersey. Nathan Cleary also secured a 6.5 rating for kicking judiciously without being the supposed rainmaker that was expected.
There were some low performers including Tevita Pangai jnr who scored 4.5 due to being erratic with three silly errors. Apisai Koroisau, who scored a try from what appeared to be a blatant knock-on, only earned a 6 as he was only able to put himself in the right position.
Payne Haas had a commendable performance, which earned him a 6.5-rating. He was kept relatively quiet by a rushing Maroons defence but still made a solid contribution. Tyson Frizell also managed a 6 because of his outstanding defensive work, with some unlucky decisions not awarded a try when tackled near the line.
Hudson Young, the Origin debutant, had a relatively poor game with a 4 rating. He dropped a ball, gave away a silly penalty, and flew from the clouds to rough up Daly Cherry-Evans. Isaah Yeo, who had plenty of the ball and Panthers around him, earned a 6 because he couldn’t quite link up the backs and forwards.
Junior Paulo was another player who had a good performance, having received a 6.5 rating. He was a weapon to unleash from the bench, starting bending the line from the moment he was injected. Cameron Murray, like Paulo, was another player who provided a 6.5 rating and came on to relieve his tired Blues forwards, likely to be more of a factor in the second half. Liam Martin fulfilled his expected performance with a tradesman-like 6.5 rating.
The Queensland Maroons team was on their A-game, creating an extraordinary performance, and their players successfully stole the spotlight from their rivals. Reece Walsh, the Maroons debutant, was the man of the match with an 8.5 rating. He showed impeccable skill under the high ball under fierce pressure from the Blues throughout the game and even had a hand in two tries for Selwyn Cobbo, including a trademark looping pass for an assist in the second.
Selwyn Cobbo earned a 7 rating. He did cough up an early mistake, but he made up for it with a try in each half down the right touchline. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow and Murray Tualagi both received an 8.5 rating for producing two stunning try-saving efforts. Moreover, Tabuai-Fidow chased down a Cameron Munster grubber to grab the opening try of the series, while Tualagi completed an audacious one-on-one strip.
Cameron Munster contributed to the massive success of the Maroons team and managed a 7 rating. He created the opening try with a sharp grubber for Tabuai-Fidow, then scored the match-winner after a quiet period throughout the game. Daly Cherry-Evans earned a 7 rating for kicking well and defending strongly.
Tino Fa’asuamaleaui, who brought plenty of fire as the Maroons’ chief metre-eater early on, scored an 8 rating. The Blues started to gain ascendancy when he was off the field, but he made a key play to regain possession after a short dropout. Ben Hunt managed a 6.5 rating for making a half break to put his team on the attack ahead of the Maroons‘ first try and was strong in defence.
Reuben Cotter, a late inclusion in the starting side, did a solid job and managed an 8.5 rating. He made a couple of key hussle plays to force turnovers after being shifted to the right edge following an injury to Tom Gilbert, who had a disappointing performance with a 5.
David Fifita, having been recalled to the team after missing the 2022 campaign, got a 7 rating having carried his strong club form into the game. Patrick Carrigan also received a 7 rating, being his usual reliable self with 14 carries for 116 metres and 33 tackles in 67 minutes.
Thomas Flegler managed only a 3 rating; despite making three strong carries, he was sin-binned for a shoulder charge with 12 minutes left. Lindsay Collins scored a 5.5 rating despite making a poor error and half a dozen missed tackles, he brought down a bomb and off for Cameron Munster to score, securing the win. Jai Arrow, who played just over half an hour, managed only 5, but he did do his job with his ten hit-ups.