NSW captain Paul Gallen is calling the Harvey Norman State of Origin
decider at Suncorp Stadium the biggest game he has ever been a part of.
He has played in a World Cup final and Four Nations deciders, but the
chance to be the first captain to lift the trophy for the Blues since
2005 would be the defining moment of Gallen’s career.
Talking to NRL fans in an exclusive live chat on Thursday afternoon Gallen described the upcoming game; “I've played in World Cup finals and other big origins but there is so much on the line. Series tied 1-1, Lockyer's last game and a packed Lang Park…it doesn't get much better than that! Also to have the opportunity to lead the boys onto the field for such an important game is definitely a thrill.”
You can read the transcript here
stage is set for an emotional finale with Darren Lockyer set to play
his last game in the Maroons jersey in front of a parochial Queensland
crowd. Can Lockyer get the dream send-off so rarely afforded to elite
sportspeople? Wally Lewis, Allan Langer, Andrew Johns and Brad Fittler
all managed to finish their stellar careers with Origin victory, will
Lockyer enter a similar chapter into rugby league folklore?
On a similar note, the rumours continue to circle that Queensland’s tireless forward Petero Civoniceva will retire from Origin football on Wednesday night. One of the greatest bookends to ever play the game, Civoniceva is heading into his 30th Origin encounter.
35-year-old has been a fixture in the Maroons team and one of the first
picked for Queensland for the better part of a decade. He has only
missed three games since making his debut in 2001! It is one of
the toughest and physically demanding positions on the field, and the
fact he continues to lead the way is an indication of his
professionalism and dedication.
For all the latest Origin news go to our Origin site here
Re-live the best moments of this year's Origin with our game analyser. Watch all the tries, big hits, or the entire match - its up to you!
DID YOU KNOW?
• Monday night’s game between Dragons and Manly with an average audience of 376,000 is ranked 8th in the Foxtel's all-time top 10 programs. The game is also the 3rd highest rated NRL game this year.
THIS WEEK ON NRL.com
Official View: Referees co-coach Bill Harrigan explains why the dual referee system is not to blame for collisions with players
Monitoring the dangerous legs tackle: the NRL has warned all clubs that there will be further guidelines in relation to unnecessary attacks on a player’s legs during a tackle.
NRL Mailbox: we explain how the NRL junior passes program works.
Stats Insider: NSW v QLD by the stats – which team comes on top and why?
Sterling Gold – Peter Sterling looks at the Origin decider and questions whether it is the biggest game in the series’ history
In Touch – Leila McKinnon looks at 2011 Favourite Son Petero Civoniceva and how the thought of what the women in his life have done for him brought the big man to tears.
Inside Word – Trent Barrett writes from inside NSW camp and says the Blues can’t afford to give up an early lead in the decider.
Next Gen – Fox Sports commentator Matt Russell looks at all the Round 16 action of the Toyota Cup including the race to be the competition’s top try-scorer.
On the Road – Steve Mascord is either living the dream or a true Rugby League tragic. His four days from Perth to Gold Coast to New Zealand to Wollongong to follow the game he loves is a great story – this is what life is like ‘on the road’.
Coach’s Box – Graham Murray looks at the possible replacements for Darren Lockyer when the great playmaker retires. Murray believes Johnathan Thurston will take over in the pivot role for Queensland.
Lone Scout – All the tips to get you through the tough bye roun.
MATCH CENTRE – ROUND 17
Get all the team lists, head-to-head stats and our match previews in the match centre. Plus live stats and scores, match highlights and much much more!
You can also watch the match highlights of the last time the two sides met.
Updated Team List - all the latest team news
THIS WEEK'S VIDEOS ON NRL.com
NRL News - with Joel Caine
Late Mail - with Peter Sterling
Queensland Forward Matt Scott previews the State of Origin decider - click here
NSW join World Champion boxer Danny Green to gain motivation for the series decider - click here
Gidley confident he’ll be 100% - click here
NSW Captain Paul Gallen believes the final 17 players will be named on Sunday after a week disrupted by injuries - click here
Injuries leave NSW players out in the cold - click here
Keith Galloway was stoked to be called into Ricky Stuart’s 20-man squad for the Origin decider - click here
Coming up this weekend on NRL.com
Saturday/Sunday 3:00pm – 4:30pm: NRL Deluxe on League TV with Freddy Fittler and John Gibbs
Full Match replays or just watch the best bits with Game Analyser. (All matches available 24 hours after final siren)