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Shot put champ Lenarduzzi ready to sock it to Blues

Her wild obsession for socks has landed her the nickname 'sock bae' and Queensland Maroons forward Chelsea Lenarduzzi wouldn't have it any other way.

The Burleigh product is back on the women's Holden State of Origin stage after sitting out last year's clash through form and has 15 pairs of her favourite socks with her in camp Maroon to celebrate the occasion. 

Lenarduzzi's extensive collection reflects interests in her life from cartoon characters and musicians to food and sporting teams.

Her teammate Chelsea Baker has a similar way of thinking, with her penchant for colouring her hair a different shade to mark certain events in her life.

"Training can be very repetitive in any sport you play and I really like a distraction and to add something different to each session so I went down the avenue of socks," Lenarduzzi told

"I've got too many, I'd say over 100 pairs of different types. I've spent too much money on them but I love them.

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"I get them everywhere – online, in store, if I see them I get them. Lots of people ask me where and I say 20 different places.

"I've got a big old school suitcase that I have just full of socks. I've got a Mighty Ducks pair and some rapper heads like Drake and 'The Weeknd' which are good.

"Everything is so serious so just to break it up a bit and they all mean something to me."

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The three-time Australian shot put champion missed out on Commonwealth games selection last year, a long-time goal that left her rugby league career on the back-burner.

"I didn't get much of a pre-season in then I got injured and by the time Nationals came around I just wasn't playing well and wasn't fit enough so I didn't deserve to get picked," Lenarduzzi said.

"I was upset but had to move on quickly because time flies. It gave me motivation through the NRLW and into this year to get back into the Queensland side.

"I'm very happy to be back, it was my number one goal to get back into the team and I was stoked to get the call.

"I've fully committed to football this year. I might go back to shot put one day when I retire but I've stopped for now."

The Maroons are hoping Lenarduzzi can kick on and push for even further honours with the Jillaroos at season's end and with one eye on the World Cup in 2021.

Chelsea Lenarduzzi's sock supply for Origin camp.
Chelsea Lenarduzzi's sock supply for Origin camp. ©Supplied

Queensland are relying on stalwarts Steph Hancock and Heather Ballinger for at least another Origin clash but the 23-year-old is one of the next generation forwards coming through the system.

"I've changed my thinking, I was so focused on these massive goals that it put too much pressure on myself," Lenarduzzi said.

"I'm lucky to have played a lot of footy with now in Steph and Heather. If there's any two forwards you want to learn off its them. I'm not sure how much time they've got left in the game so I want to soak in all the advice they have left to give me."

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National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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