New South Wales claimed a 22-12 victory over Queensland in the opening State of Origin clash of 2018 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Tries from James Tedesco, Latrell Mitchell, Tom Trbojevic and James Addo-Carr brace sealed a perfect start to life as Blues coach for Brad Fittler.
Valentine Holmes and Dane Gagai notched four-pointers for the Maroons but their efforts were in vain as NSW took the first game of the series.
Queensland started on the front foot but it was Fittler’s men who got the scoreboard ticking thanks to a James Maloney penalty goal in the 19th minute.
Soon after, the Blues extended their advantage to two scores as Tedesco finished off a fine move started by Damien Cook. Maloney added the extras.
Queensland responded on 28 minutes as Maloney’s pass to the right flank was latched on to by Holmes, who sprinted to the whitewash. The winger goaled and the score-line stayed 8-6 to the Blues till after the break.
The Maroons hit the front for the first time in the contest when Gagai touched down a Ben Hunt grubber. Holmes converted.
A quick-fire double from Mitchell and Trbojevic turned the game on its head and Addo-Carr’s try in the final quarter gave NSW a ten-point lead that they weren’t going to relinquish.