New South Wales name team for Game I

It’s that time of year again when the best rugby league of the year is played. State of Origin is upon us and it won’t be long until we see the Blues take on the Maroons for bragging rights as the world’s best players do battle.

Plenty of the world’s best players currently hail from New South Wales and Brad Fittler had the unenviable job of pulling together a team out of the many quality players at his disposal. Today he revealed his 19 man squad for Game I.

Unsurprisingly, there’s a sizeable Penrith contingent. The Panthers are dominating the NRL at the moment as their young players begin to evolve into the world’s very best. Speaking of which, Penrith superstar Nathan Cleary is arguably the best player on the planet at the moment and he’ll start the game at seven alongside Penrith teammate Jarome Luai in the halves. Luai has been given the nod ahead of Canberra’s Jack Wighton. Many expected the brilliant Wighton to start but he’s only been afforded a spot on the bench.

Despite their recent struggles, plenty of South Sydney players feature. Latrell Mitchell – an Origin hero in the past – returns to centre having evolved into a brilliant fullback at Souths. He’s joined by fellow fullback Tom Trbojevic in the centres. Tommy Turbo has been scintillating recently and some even suggested he should be given the number one jersey as reward. That said, it’s possible he could be used as a second fullback, as he was in 2019, and given free-reign across the field.

Tom’s brother Jake also features in an interestingly looking pack. Cameron Murray starts at second-row despite being more accustomed to the loose-forward role.

It’s a brilliant team full of class. It would take a brave man to predict they’ll lose a second consecutive Origin Series.

Here’s the New South Wales team in full:

1 James Tedesco
2 Brian To’o
3 Latrell Mitchell
4 Tom Trbojevic
5 Josh Addo-Carr
6 Jarome Luai
7 Nathan Cleary
8 Daniel Saifiti
9 Damien Cook
10 Jake Trbojevic
11 Cameron Murray
12 Tariq Sims
13 Isaah Yeo
14 Jack Wighton
15 Junior Paulo
16 Payne Haas
17 Liam Martin
18 Api Koroisau
19 Campbell Graham

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