When it is time for John Bateman to hang up the boots, he could have a career in punditry.
This is because the former Wigan Warriors star made a bold prediction over two years ago which has now come true.
As he left Canberra Raiders behind, he backed Hudson Young to more than replace him and said he would be playing State of Origin “in a couple of years.”
Hudson Young. The lad will be origin and Australian representative in a couple of years 👏🏻 https://t.co/OU7diXCASk
— John Bateman (@johnbateman1) February 22, 2021
Now, a couple of years later, Bateman’s prediction has come true.
NSW Blues coach Brad Fittler this wee named three debutants for the opening game of the 2023 Ampol State of Origin series at Adelaide Oval in Adelaide on Wednesday 31 May.
The squad also includes five players from 2022 NRL premiers Penrith Panthers, while James Tedesco will captain the team for the third consecutive year having officially taken on the role in 2020.
The three players who are yet to debut for the Blues include Dally M Medallist and Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks halfback Nicho Hynes, Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs prop Tevita Pangai Junior and of course Young himself.
South Sydney Rabbitohs centre Campbell Graham has been named as 18th player.
Josh Addo-Carr (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
Nathan Cleary (Penrith Panthers)
Tyson Frizell (Newcastle Knights)
Payne Haas (Brisbane Broncos)
Nicho Hynes (Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks)
Apisai Koroisau (Wests Tigers)
Jarome Luai (Penrith Panthers)
Liam Martin (Penrith Panthers)
Latrell Mitchell (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Cameron Murray (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Tevita Pangai Junior (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
Junior Paulo (Parramatta Eels)
James Tedesco (c) (Sydney Roosters)
Brian To’o (Penrith Panthers)
Tom Trbojevic (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)
Isaah Yeo (Penrith Panthers)
Hudson Young (Canberra Raiders)
18th player – Campbell Graham (South Sydney Rabbitohs)