Peter Sterling: My message to Blues selectors

With the NSW squad to be named on Monday, this is my last chance to steer selectors in the right direction.<br><br>While five straight series losses won’t be contemplated or discussed during the Blues' preparation, there will be enough external pressures to know that failure is not an option.<br><br>It is imperative then that the 17 chosen are given the assurance and the confidence that they have been selected for the series. Irrespective of what happens in Game 1, they need to know that they will also be at Suncorp Stadium on June 16 to either wrap up the series or force a decider.<br><br>After nine rounds and our first representative fixtures over the weekend, I must admit that I’ve had a change of heart concerning some positions.<br><br>It begins at fullback where I’d believed that Kurt Gidley should retain the No.1 jersey. However, after much angst, I now favour that Jarryd Hayne should get the nod and be named in his club position with Kurt being injected off the interchange bench.<br><br>It may sound strange, but I don’t consider this a demotion for the Knights skipper - more a strong attacking move by the Blues to capitalise on what both players have to offer.<br><br>With Hayne at fullback, you are fighting fire with fire when it comes to Queensland boasting Billy Slater as their custodian. Jarryd possesses the same kind of potency as Billy, but I’m sure it is best demonstrated with the freedom and opportunity that fullback provides. He is at his dynamic best when able to pick and choose the times to get involved.<br><br>I also see him being able to work up a similar combination with his halves that Cooper Cronk and Billy Slater enjoy.<br><br>In relation to Kurt, there are crucial times in Origin matches where a side is able to force the initiative and grab the momentum. This is generally achieved around the play-the-ball and, by coming off the bench with his spearing runs, Gidley could be the trump to give his side the telling advantage. If he can come into the contest and lift the Blues' tempo, Queensland may find it difficult to go with them. <br><br>It also doesn’t hurt that he is the perfect reserve by being able to cover every position outside of front-row.<br><br>Brett Morris has a mortgage on the left flank and could quite literally be the first player chosen. His rise has been so rapid that he is one of those rare players to have represented his country before his state.<br><br>Left centre has created plenty of discussion, but in my opinion Matt Cooper is an absolute must. In fact, since coming back from an early season hamstring strain, he has established himself as the form centre of the competition.<br><br>Defensively he has always been faultless but he is now looking for the football more and showing that he is just as good with the ball in hand.<br><br>Most importantly, this gives NSW a Dragons partnership which has been super successful and rock-solid.<br><br><b><a href="http://www.nrl.com/gameAnalyser/tabId/10910/default.aspx?seasonID=240?seasonid=240&amp;roundid=844&amp;fixtureid=50020100806&amp;videoquality=1&amp;type=try&amp;period=1&amp;time=713" target="_blank">CLICK HERE to see the Morris / Cooper combination working for the Dragons.</a></b><br><br>On the other side of the field, Jamie Lyon is playing with real maturity and I’d match that with welcoming back Timana Tahu into the Origin fold. He may not have worn a blue jersey since 2006, but recent club performances have shown that he is still an elite performer.<br><br>Both he and Jamie are strong defenders and have the necessary aggression to give Greg Inglis and presumably Lote Tuqiri a difficult time. They also have the footwork to cause this duo problems when NSW have the football.<br><br><b><a href="http://www.nrl.com/gameAnalyser/tabId/10910/default.aspx?seasonID=240?seasonid=240&amp;roundid=841&amp;fixtureid=50020100506&amp;videoquality=1&amp;type=linebreak&amp;period=2&amp;time=858" target="_blank">CLICK HERE to see Lyon's ability to break the line with footwork and speed.</a></b><br><br>Of Timana’s 11 appearances for the Blues, eight have been on the wing.<br><br>In the absence of Mitchell Pearce, Brett Kimmorley will be the halfback, but his partner in crime shapes as the most contentious selection.<br><br>After being named for Country, Greg Bird seemed to have the inside running as the five-eighth, but he is best suited in the back-row and is in some ways still finding his way back in the NRL. So too is Todd Carney, and it would be counter-productive to his career to throw him into the pressure cooker of Origin at this time.<br><br>I’d be re-calling Terry Campese, who was dumped after making his debut in Game 1 last year. He didn’t play poorly, just lacked involvement.<br><br>He’s an attacking-minded player who defends well and has a prodigious boot. There have also been some touches with Josh Dugan for the Raiders which augurs well with what he could provide for Jarryd Hayne.<br><br><b><a href="http://www.nrl.com/gameAnalyser/tabId/10910/default.aspx?seasonID=240?seasonid=240&amp;roundid=844&amp;fixtureid=50020100803&amp;videoquality=1&amp;type=linebreak&amp;period=1&amp;time=1195" target="_blank">CLICK HERE to see Campese's inside ball to Dugan which bodes well for Hayne</a></b><a href="http://www.nrl.com/gameAnalyser/tabId/10910/default.aspx?seasonID=240?seasonid=240&amp;roundid=844&amp;fixtureid=50020100803&amp;videoquality=1&amp;type=linebreak&amp;period=1&amp;time=1195" target="_blank">.</a><br><br><b><a href="http://www.nrl.com/telstrapremiership/gameanalyservideo/tabid/10910/default.aspx?seasonid=240?seasonid=240&amp;roundid=844&amp;fixtureid=50020100801&amp;videoquality=1&amp;type=linebreak&amp;period=2&amp;time=1621" target="_blank">CLICK HERE to see Hayne running off a similar style ball from Kris Keating against the Bulldogs.</a></b><br><br><b><a href="http://www.nrl.com/gameAnalyser/tabId/10910/default.aspx?seasonID=240?seasonid=240&amp;roundid=840&amp;fixtureid=50020100401&amp;videoquality=1&amp;type=try&amp;period=2&amp;time=1665" target="_blank">CLICK HERE to see to see a similar play between Queensland's likely pairing of Cooper Cronk and Billy Slater.</a></b><br><br>There exists a wealth of talent in the back-row with some outstanding players set to miss out.<br><br>Luke Lewis locks my scrum, with Anthony Watmough and Ben Creagh the second-rowers.<br><br>After starting for the Aussies against the Kiwis last Friday night, both Michael Weyman and Josh Perry did more than enough to do the same for the Blues. &nbsp;<br><br>The battle between Michael Ennis and Robbie Farah has been a beauty and both players deserve to be there. With so little between them, it is the Canterbury connection which gives Michael the edge. Being a possible back-up goal kicker is also an important string to the bow.<br><br>With Kurt Gidley one bench player, we need three suitable forwards to round out the 17.<br><br>I love the explosiveness and sheer size of Tom Learoyd-Lahrs and after missing some football this season he is fresh and raring to go.<br><br>Trent Waterhouse also offers a great build but with added mobility and ball-playing ability.<br><br>Finally Brett White is the kind of no-nonsense, no-frills customer custom made to share the prop rotation with Weyman and Perry. Obviously club coach Bellamy knows what to expect from him and at what times he should be used.<br><br>What I really like about this squad is that each and every player is a solid defender, but also possess great attacking prowess. It is just the kind of combination needed to knock over Queensland.<br><br><b>So here is my NSW team for Game 1...</b><br><br>1. Jarryd Hayne<br>2. Brett Morris<br>3. Matt Cooper<br>4. Jamie Lyon<br>5. Timana Tahu<br>6. Terry Campese<br>7. Brett Kimmorley<br>8. Michael Weyman<br>9. Michael Ennis<br>10. Josh Perry<br>11. Anthony Watmough<br>12. Ben Creagh<br>13. Luke Lewis<br><br>14. Kurt Gidley<br>15. Tom Learoyd-Lahrs<br>16. Trent Waterhouse<br>17. Brett White