Fittler lauds NSW's brilliant generation next
NSW coach Brad Fittler isn't getting ahead of himself despite beating Queensland 22-12 in game one of Holden State of Origin at the MCG on Wednesday night.
His young Blues, featuring 11 debutants, managed to weather a second-half Queensland comeback to record a four-tries-to-two-win.
After a first-up victory in charge of his state, Fittler revealed he has quickly shifted focus to game two on June 24 at ANZ Stadium.
"I felt like we were going to win this game," he said.
"I was very excited about the team. I just feel like the moment the whistle went, I just felt I need to get on with the second one."
And the Blues boss is a realist, citing the crippling injury toll his opponents faced in the lead-up which is unlikely to happen again.
"I don't think Queensland will be in that position again, with what went on in their camps, players pulling out, losing so much experience. And having blokes play with some pretty severe injuries as well. So, I don't think we'll play a team so underdone as that,'' he said.
Fittler also praised his rookie players, who all stepped up in their first Origin game.
"To see Latrell (Mitchell) scoring a try just by using his brute strength - (it's about) getting small opportunities and nailing them as well," he said.
"The Fox (Josh Addo-Carr), (Tom) Trbojevic as well. They're the future of our game and nailed their first big moment, their first big opportunity. I'm very excited for them."
Although Valentine Holmes scored an intercept try for Queensland a few minutes after the Blues' first four pointer, NSW skipper Boyd Cordner revealed he wanted to keep his team in an upbeat mood.
"I just wanted to keep everyone positive and to keep on track," he said.
"With the team and we've got, and the skillset and everything like that, the last thing we wanted to do is hang on. We wanted to go after it. With the team and players, we did that. We weathered their storm - we felt like we were coming off our own line for ages there, but kept turning up for each other."
Cordner skippered the Blues in the corresponding game last year to a commanding 28-4 victory.
He's not letting himself dream of an Origin series win just yet either.
"There's probably going to be a bit more hunger, playing at home, knowing we're one win away (from a series win)," he said.
"But everyone knows how hard Origin is. It's about enjoying this win tonight and preparing really well for the next game."
Game I is done and dusted! Don’t miss Game II of Origin at ANZ Stadium on Sunday 24 June. Click here to get your tickets.