Origin Game 3: Man of the Match Preview & Tips

James Baxter
 | 
Tue, 9 Jul, 12:00 AM

Who will be best on ground in the 2019 State of Origin Series decider? We’ve got best and value bets for the Blues and Maroons to get around.

NEW SOUTH WALES

Best bet - Mitchell Pearce’s ($8* - Sportsbet) Origin battles are more documented than any other player in history. His record in game three’s stands at 0-7. But should Pearce at long last exorcise his Origin demons with a pivotal role in a Blues win, the emotional factor in any Man of the Match decision will sway more heavily towards the maligned half than any other Blue.

At club level Pearce has been a judging favourite, leading the Dally M count. He’s also got readymade combinations throughout the side and will have a monumental point to prove. With the media pushing the maligned half’s redemption, a Pearce Man of the Match award will go down in Origin folklore.

Value bet - Should New South Wales win there’ll be nobody more inspirational in doing so than captain Boyd Cordner ($21* - Sportsbet). The edge forward has enjoyed a strong opening two games and was Man of the Match the last time Origin was held at ANZ Stadium.

Mitchell Pearce’s return alongside James Maloney means Cordner reunites with his 2013 Premiership-winning halves hand his powerful left-edge running offering a reliable go-to option for both playmakers in attack. A stirring performance from the captain to clinch his state’s first successful Origin title defence since 2005 will be hard for the selectors to ignore for Man of the Match honours.

QUEENSLAND

Best bet - the biggest selection call Maroons coach Kevin Walters has made for game three is shifting Cameron Munster ($8* - Sportsbet) to fullback. Without Kalyn Ponga’s magic from the back, the Maroons desperately need Munster to deliver – and the Storm star can do just that.

Munster made his name in the 1 jersey, being no stranger to stepping into ominous fullback shoes in seamlessly covering for Billy Slater. Removing Munster from five-eighth opens him up to attack across the whole pitch instead of solely a left-edge corridor and given new pivot Corey Norman is on debut, the pressure for Munster to maintain his playmaking duties remains as high as ever.

Look for Munster to have an eye-catching night and be the strongest Man of the Match contender for the Maroons should they emerge as the 2019 Origin winners.

Value bet – Daly Cherry-Evans ($15* - Unibet) loves the big games and Queensland’s skipper is good enough to mastermind a shock upset in Sydney. There’s little doubt the Maroons attack revolves around the Manly veteran and with Corey Norman on debut, DCE will be even more hands-on in reinvigorating Queensland’s attack.

Should the game go down to the wire there’s no better field goal exponent in NRL than Cherry-Evans and with his class, Queensland’s halfback is a great value option to get the nod for best on ground.

*Odds subject to change

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