Billy Slater – 7.5
Did what Billy does. Great positioning drew some dumb penalties out of James Maloney and laid the platform for the final try.
Dane Gagai – 8.5
Gagai played well in Game 1 and played even better in Game 2. 174m, was potent in attack and owned the second half.
Will Chambers – 5
We know Chambers is aggressive, but this time it didn’t work in his favour. There were moments where Chambers just rushed up unnecessarily, not trusting his inside men. Found out in defence.
Darius Boyd – 6
Boyd had a good game at Centre. A good effort considering he never plays there. Could blossom to become a quality Origin centre with Inglis half way out the door.
Valentine Holmes – 5
Proves that State of Origin football is more difficult than international football. Didn’t have a good debut. The try he scored was more due to poor NSW defence. Oates would have been a better play in this game.
Jonathan Thurston – 7.5
JT gets an extra half point for playing with one arm. Thurston was a speed bump in defence, but more than made up for it by steering his team around the park effectively.
Cooper Cronk – 6.5
Didn’t really stand out in any way. A few good kicks here and there but was the weak link in a NSW try.
Dylan Napa – 6.5
Quiet opening to the game but managed to make up for it with a strong second half. Napa did well to stand up to a better NSW forward pack.
Cameron Smith – 7.5
We get it, he’s great, lets move on.
Jarrod Wallace – 4
Not the best Origin debut by any stretch of the imagination. Wallace seemed to be a passenger and didn’t make much impact.
Gavin Cooper – 6
Made 47 tackles, did his job protecting Thurston (with help from poor NSW game planning) in a solid way.
Matt Gillett – 7
Gillett was very solid in an underdog forward pack. Great defensive reads throughout and a number of tackles to back it up.
Josh McGuire – 7
The Moose is on the loose! How he got through the line to set up Gagai’s first try is beyond me. McGuire plays with a lot of heart and had 42 tackles with 116m to show for it. Solid effort.
Michael Morgan – 7
Captain clutch turned up again. Morgan threw the final flick pass to set Gagai up mirroring his efforts in the grand final against Brisbane.
Josh Papalii – 6
Papalii was played out of position. Did a decent job in his role of filling time in the middle of the field.
Coen Hess – 4
Didn’t do much, but in his defence, he didn’t have much opportunity to.
Tim Glasby – 5
Was found out a couple of times in the first half. Shored himself up in the second half and was able to play some good minutes in a Queensland forward pack which should’ve been manhandled.
By Nik Hatzi