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The most eagerly anticipated Wednesday night of the year had arrived as the crowd packed into the Townsville Queensland Country Bank Stadium, TV’s across the Antipodes were switched on, cold tinnies were opened, and the World settled back to be royally entertained by the opening State of Origin encounter between New South Wales and Queensland as the 2021 series got underway.

Queensland regained the shield in 2020 after losing out to New South Wales in the previous two seasons but it was the Blues who were strong favourites with the bookies, despite the Maroons being at home in front of a deeply partisan crowd.

There was only one real certainty, it was going to be a sensational game.

An early penalty for a shepherd by Daly Cherry-Evans gave the Blues the perfect opportunity to open the scoring and on nine minutes Nathan Cleary slotted the ball between the uprights for a 2-0 lead.

An obstruction by Kyle Feldt on Addo-Carr gifted the Blues a set of six just ten from the Maroons line and two plays into the set Tom ‘Turbo’ Trbojevic ran the angle to go in from ten metres out. Cleary made no mistake with the conversion, the Blues 8-0 ahead on nineteen minutes.

The Blues turned defence into attack on twenty-two with a sensational Damien Cook break before, on the next play, Jarome Luai found Brian To’o in the clear to go the last ten and dive over in the corner. Latrell Mitchell took over the conversion duties as Cleary received treatment to a cut cheek and made sure despite the difficultly of the kick.

Three minutes later and To’o was in again for a short range try off a long miss-out pass from Tariq Sims as Queensland struggled to get into the game. The Blues were in scintillating form and when Cleary swung the touchline coversion between the posts it was 20-0 and already slipping away from the Maroons, the crowd eerily quiet.

Six minutes from the interval the Maroons finally got on the board when a Cam Munster pass found Kurt Capewell who evaded the tackle of Tom Trbojevic before going in from twenty metres. Valentine Holmes added the conversion from wide to reduce the arrears and give Queensland some hope.

Just under nine minutes were on the second half clock when Mitchell collected a delightful Trbojevic grubber kick to dive over from two metres out. Cleary added the conversion to give the Blues a 26-6 lead.

NSW were carving Queensland apart. On fifty-eight a great break from Luai saw him make forty metres before quick hands from Mitchell into the path of Trbojevic for his to cross for his second of the night. When Cleary added the conversion for 32-6 on the hour mark it was game over and now down to the size of the margin.

Mitchell completed his brace on sixty-one when a Cleary kick was claimed by the centre to evade the tacklers and go over. Another sensational Cleary conversion made it 38-6.

It had been a devastating five-minute spell when Saifiti crashed over under the sticks as the Maroons defence were unable to defend their line. Cleary added his seventh goal of the game as the home side visibly tired.

Magical hands from the Blues brought up the fifty. A Cleary break and some delightful passing, notably a backhand pass from James Tedesco went to Tom Trbojevic to complete his hat-trick. Cleary added the conversion for 50-6.

Despite having the support of ninety-five percent of the crowd, this was a nightmare of an evening for the Maroons as they were methodically dismantled by a Blues side which was running lava hot. The backs shared seven tries between them in a fifty-point haul which will have the Queensland players dreading the second match in a couple of weeks’ time. The Blues were simply awesome and more than lived up to the bookies ‘favourites’ tag.

Queensland: Holmes (G), Coates, Capewell (T), Gagai, Feldt, Munster, Cherry-Evans, Welch, Grant, Fa’asuamaleaui, Kaufusi, Fifita, Arrow. Subs: Brimson, Su’A, Fotuaika, Ofahengaue. 18th Man: Hunt.

New South Wales: Tedesco, To’o (2T), Mitchell (2T, G), Trbojevic T (3T), Addo-Carr, Luai, Cleary (8G), Saifiti (T), Cook, Trbojevic J, Murray, Sims, Yeo. Subs: Wighton, Paulo, Haas, Martin. 18th Man: Koroisau.

Half-Time: 6-20.

Full-Time: 6-50.

Referee: Gerard Sutton.

Score Progression: 0-2, 0-6, 0-8, 12-0, 14-0, 18-0, 20-0, 4-20, 6-20 : HT : 6-24, 6-26, 6-30, 6-32, 6-36, 6-38, 6-42, 6-44, 6-48, 6-50 : FT.




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Posted by RLFANS News Hound on Wed 9th Jun 2021 1:06 PM | Views : 6282 | Replies : 0 | BACK TO STORIES
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WSL RND: 9 St.HelensW24-0WakefieldW
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Melbourne 17 632 198 434 30
Penrith 17 493 179 314 30
Souths 17 503 346 157 28
Parramatta 17 474 255 219 26
Sydney 17 453 335 118 22
Manly 17 485 354 131 20
St.George 17 358 382 -24 16
Cronulla 17 326 394 -68 14
 
Canberra 17 347 421 -74 14
Newcastle 17 283 420 -137 14
Gold Coast 17 394 468 -74 12
Wests 17 372 502 -130 12
NQL Cowboys 17 324 527 -203 12
NZ Warriors 17 333 426 -93 10
Brisbane 17 282 542 -260 8
Canterbury 17 212 522 -310 4
This is an inplay table and positions can change as matches are in play.
Betfred Super League XXVI ROUND : 15
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Catalans 13 387 196 191 24 197.45 92.31
St.Helens 12 286 96 190 20 297.92 83.33
Warrington 13 408 213 195 19 191.55 73.08
Wigan 15 247 268 -21 20 92.16 66.67
Hull FC 12 286 215 71 15 133.02 62.50
Hull KR 10 241 212 29 12 113.68 60
 
Leeds 14 332 251 81 14 132.27 50
Castleford 14 251 354 -103 12 70.90 42.86
Salford 14 237 405 -168 8 58.52 28.57
Huddersfield 15 244 318 -74 8 76.73 26.67
Wakefield 15 259 354 -95 8 73.16 26.67
Leigh 13 212 508 -296 0 41.73 0
This is an inplay table and positions can change as matches are in play.
Betfred Championship 2021 ROUND : 13
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Toulouse 9 433 88 345 18 492.05 100
Featherstone 12 537 136 401 24 394.85 100
Bradford 12 324 279 45 18 116.13 75
Halifax 13 358 171 187 18 209.36 69.23
LondonB 13 374 337 37 17 110.98 65.38
Batley 13 328 274 54 16 119.71 61.54
 
Newcastle 12 272 358 -86 11 75.98 45.83
Widnes 13 307 344 -37 11 89.24 42.31
Sheffield 13 285 373 -88 11 76.41 42.31
Whitehaven 13 249 372 -123 9 66.94 34.62
Dewsbury 13 197 379 -182 9 51.98 34.62
York 13 299 317 -18 8 94.32 30.77
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Swinton 13 224 483 -259 0 46.38 0
This is an inplay table and positions can change as matches are in play.
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Barrow 10 342 150 192 17 228 85
Workington 9 334 158 176 15 211.39 83.33
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Keighley 10 348 239 109 10 145.61 50
Rochdale 10 279 280 -1 10 99.64 50
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Coventry 8 204 240 -36 8 85 50
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LondonS 8 154 292 -138 2 52.74 12.50
West Wales 10 122 514 -392 0 23.74 0
This is an inplay table and positions can change as matches are in play.
Betfred Womens Super League 2021 ROUND : 9
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LeedsW 7 364 38 326 14 957.89 100
St.HelensW 7 370 36 334 12 1,027.78 85.71
WiganW 6 222 64 158 10 346.88 83.33
YorkW 6 186 102 84 8 182.35 66.67
CastlefordW 6 166 96 70 8 172.92 66.67
BradfordW 8 158 264 -106 6 59.85 37.50
 
Hudds W 7 104 288 -184 4 36.11 28.57
Wire W 8 150 334 -184 4 44.91 25
FeatherstoneW 8 122 338 -216 4 36.09 25
WakefieldW 7 50 332 -282 0 15.06 0
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