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Hand injury won't stop Sergis from taking centre stage

Sky Blues star Jess Sergis has refused to let a hand injury keep her out of this year’s clash, desperate to reclaim the Origin shield from Queensland after losing in a two-point thriller last year.

When Sergis broke two fingers in a training run four weeks ago, it was her passion and commitment to the NSW jersey that kept her positive in a bid to get her back on the field.

"It was in a tackle that I broke them and I just thought it was jarred fingers and didn’t want to make a big scene but I got X-rays a few days later and they were broken," Sergis told NRL.com.

"I haven’t played football since then, but I’ve definitely been running a lot so they haven’t let me slack off. I’ll just strap them up for the game and get on with it."

The Roosters centre, who will play her fourth official Origin match, will be out for redemption in a jersey that the 24-year-old says she'll “never take for granted”.

Queensland defeated New South Wales 8-6 in last year's Origin match.
Queensland defeated New South Wales 8-6 in last year's Origin match. ©Nathan Hopkins/NRL Photos

“Origin is my favourite time of the year so to be back with everyone in these colours is really exciting, I think it’s my favourite jersey to pull on,” she said.

“The rivalry with Queensland for me and my family is something else. As long as I can remember, I’d always go and support the boys in the Blatchys Blues."

NSW wrapped up their Origin preparations on Thursday morning with a light session in the nation's capital.

2022 Women's State of Origin

“Coming so close last year it was really disappointing with a finish like that. It hurts a lot more so we’re definitely hungry this year,” she said.

“Obviously there were some errors and mistakes but we’ve learned from that and we know what we need to do to win. We’ve just got to put our faith in ourselves and our coaches and play our game.”

Sky Blues coach Kylie Hilder said the side couldn't have been more prepared this year with the squad being based in Canberra since Monday.

"We had an opposed session with Canberra's Jersey Flegg side which was a great session and we took a lot out of it," Hilder said.

"The spine has combined really well and fast, they're all professional athletes now so it doesn't take long for them to come together.

"If everyone does their job, and that's what we've been emphasising this week, you do the job and it will all come together."

NSW captain Kezie Apps, playing in her ninth match for the Sky Blues, said making amends for last year's result was on the players' minds.

"It wasn't how we envisioned it, especially the last couple of minutes, it's definitely revenge but this year is a different year. I'm excited to put everything into practice tomorrow," Apps said.

"We only have one chance at it so have to take every opportunity."

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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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