Stat of Origin: Intensity lifts Vaughan to new heights
Paul Vaughan's 26-minute stint off the bench against the Maroons on Wednesday night produced more intensity than any other player in the opening game of the series.
The Blues, through Vaughan and Angus Crichton, provided more impact off the bench than Queensland's forward pack in five of six intensity areas.
According to Telstra Tracker Data, Vaughan covered just over half the ground in reduced minutes than he normally would in an NRL game but his intensity was measured at a higher rate.
The 27-year-old left the field in the second half and was seen immediately vomiting on the sidelines after working himself to the point of physical exhaustion.
"I didn't know what to expect being my first one I wanted to get a gauge on my own," Vaughan told NRL.com.
"You hear so much about the level and it definitely went up another gear. It's frantic and a lot different to a first-grade game. I felt it as soon as I took my first run."
Vaughan's first run was one to remember.
He got picked up and dumped on his back by a fired-up Greg Inglis midway through the first half.
"He got under me with a good shot and that's exactly what I was thinking, 'Welcome to Origin'," Vaughan said.
"It probably made me switch on if I wasn't already so I saw that as a good thing."
NSW Origin team high performance manager Hayden Knowles told NRL.com he wasn't surprised by the intensity figures after watching Vaughan prepare for the game.
"Without knowing all the details a shorter spell has allowed him to go at a higher intensity," Knowles said.
"That's why it's different with the shorter periods, he was utilised in a way that suited us as a side and he as a player with that role. The moment and arena helped but also at club level he's providing a different service.
"What's important to myself and Freddie [coach Brad Fittler] is we want him staying hungry. If he applies himself with that hunger and putting-the-team first mentality that's what Freddie is building.
"He was sensational every day [at training], you usually play how you prepare."
The Dragons are hopeful Vaughan, Jack de Belin and Tyson Frizell will back up for the club on Monday at ANZ Stadium against a Bulldogs side who rely heavily on their forward pack.
In the Red V's favour is a five-day turnaround.
"Being my first Origin it's helpful for me to get the five days in," Vaughan said.
"I feel alright. It's going to be a tough game to back up for. They've got a great forward pack there, probably their strength so it will be a hard battle. Having big Klem coming off the back of his performance as well will be tough.
"We've got to bounce back from our loss to the Panthers. The other boys have had a long turnaround and they'll be ready to go."
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