Queensland wins Under-16s Origin

Queensland has survived a late fightback by NSW to claim the 2014 Under-16s State of Origin 20-18 at Suncorp Stadium on Wednesday night.

Leading 12-8 at the break, the Blues gave up two tries before crossing for their first try of the second half with less than five minutes remaining in the match.

The Maroons managed to outscore the Blues by four tries to three, with the boot of Blues' halfback Brendan O'Hagan keeping the visitors in the contest in the dying minutes.

After trailing at half-time, the Maroons opened the scoring nine minutes into the second half when five-eighth Sato Ketia Opo wrestled his way over the line after the home side were stripped of the ball in the previous set. Centre Steven Tatipata added the extras to hand Queensland a 14-12 lead with 21 minutes remaining.

The Maroons crossed again 10 minutes from full-time on the back of two penalties conceded by NSW, the first for a play-the-ball infringement and the second for a lifting tackle. From the next set Queeensland winger Enari Tuala burst through a hole in the Blues' defensive line to take the score out to 20-12.

With three minutes left on the clock the Blues scored in the corner off a mistake by Tuala, allowing Katoni Staggs to plant the ball down with O'Hagan quickly converting the try to set up a grandstand finish with the score line reading 20-18.

Queensland managed to hold tight in defence in the remaining seconds to deny NSW a chance at snatching victory, taking the shield off the Blues, who won in 2013.

In the first half, the Maroons were first to crack the line in the second minute after halfback Lachlan Lam, son of former Queensland Origin half Adrian Lam, delivered the final pass for back-rower Syd Smith to charge on to and power his way over the line. Tatipata had his conversion effort waved away, keeping the score at 4-0.

Six minutes later the Blues hit back after taking advantage of a Queensland mistake 10 metres out. From the resulting set, NSW lock Cameron Murray crashed over from close range with the try converted by O'Hagan to take the score to 6-4 in favour of the Blues.

The visitors crossed again in the 19th minute through Sione Hopoate, son of John and brother of Will Hopoate, allowing the Blues to double their lead to 12-4.

Queensland responded with a try to Jason Chapman in the south-west corner, however the conversion from Tatipata was unsuccessful, keeping the scoreboard at 12-8, which it remained until half-time.

Queensland Under-16s 20 (Syd Smith, Jason Chapman, Sato Ketia Opo, Enari Tuala tries; Steven Tatipata 2 goals) def. NSW Under-16s 18 (Cameron Murray, Sione Hopoate, Katoni Staggs tries; Brendan O'Hagan 3 goals) at Suncorp Stadium.