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Greg Pritchard and Richey Cunninghame rate the Origin players

By Greg Prichard and Richey Cunninghame
June 17, 2004 - 12:17AM


Rhys Wesser 6

Wesser had a bit of a shocker, playing more like Hodges. Let in the first try, put his team under pressure with dropped balls and fumbles. Did put on a good pass for Slaters first try and a brilliant tackle on Rooney to save a try. Put in a stupid kick on the third tackle in the second half wasting good possession close to the Blues line.

Matt Sing 7

Professional display. Came inside to kill off movements with smothering defence and covered well on kicks. Seems to step up in the Origin games

Paul Bowman 7.5

The sort of game we expect from him at this level. Strong in defence, but rarely threatening in attack. Brilliant defence, always making the tackle when the Blues were threatening. Constantly chopped down the big Blues forwards, especially O'Meley

Willie Tonga 7.5  

Had trouble handling Gidley in defence, but was a big threat when he ran the ball. Strong debut- brilliant foot work but shakey in defence.

Billy Slater 8   

Attacked brilliantly. Scored the try of the series in the second half to continue a terrific first Origin series. Poor defence at times. Should have left Gidley to Flannery instead of coming off wing and got ran over by Tahu but did manage to knock Tahu and ball out in second half to save try. Brilliant speed

Darren Lockyer (c) 8   

Controlled the game for the Maroons. His defence, passing and kicking were all quality, as usual.

Scott Prince 7   

Dropped into a supporting role in the playmaking with Lockyer back from injury and was solid. Threatened the line a few times and good defence

Tonie Carroll 7   

Didn't come up with the big plays he did in Origin I, but worked hard in defence and chased hard on kicks.  Strong defence as usual and threatened the line occasionally

Dane Carlaw 7

Shared the workload. Hit the line strongley and good defence. Picked up a lucky try

Petero Civoniceva 7

Typically robust display. Tough in defence and backed up some good, hard runs with quick play-the-balls.

Steve Price 8

Solid game as always. Hit the ball up all night and defended strongly. Saves interchanges for other players

Cameron Smith 8

Another wholehearted display. Always a threat with his skill around the rucks and kicked well out of dummy-half.

Shane Webcke 7

The most respected prop in the game worked his guts out and did well, apart from one knock-on.

Ben Ross 7

The same as he did in Origin I, came off the bench and made an impact with some big charges.

Corey Parker 5.5

Found it tough to adjust to the pace of Origin football, but kept trying. He'll be more used to it next time.

Chris Flannery 7

Got heavily involved as he usually does off the bench. Could have scored in the 50th minute, but knocked on due to some early interference. Excellent defence

Matt Bowen 6

Not introduced until the second half, as usual. Tried to get involved, but couldn't find a hole in the Blues defence. Threatened a lot


Anthony Minichiello 6.5

Not as dominant as he was in Origin last year. Did some good things, but made mistakes, too. A couple of great runs from the back to get Blues out from their line but missed a couple of tackles

Timana Tahu 7.5

Scored two first-half tries, both a result of his great understanding with Newcastle teammate Gidley but dropped the bomb to let Carlaw in for his try. Managed to catch the next one when Maroons tried it again

Matt Gidley 7.5

Always a danger in attack and created Tahu's two tries, but had some trouble handling Tonga in defence.

Luke Lewis 6.5

Not as sure as he was in Origin I. Defended well, but rarely found himself in position to threaten in attack. Gave away the stupid penalty to let Maroons get 4 ahead and run down game

Luke Rooney 7

Solid. Tackled into touch by Wesser on try-scoring chance in first half, but scored a try in the second half.

Brad Fittler 7

Had a strong influence in the first half. Not as dominant after the break, but kept trying until the end.

Brett Finch 6.5

Threw himself into the game early, but as a rookie he wasn't the man to get the Blues out of trouble. Great bombs but went missing in the second half

Craig Fitzgibbon 7.5

Strong as ever. Worked his guts out in defence like he always does and charged it up hard all night. Great goalkicking

Andrew Ryan 6.5

Similar to Fitzgibbon, he was a workaholic, throwing himself into the defence and taking the ball up hard.

Nathan Hindmarsh 7

Did plenty of work in defence and made a good run in the lead-up to Rooney's second-half try. Great run in the first half down the touch line.

Mark O'Meley 7

Put his stamp on the game early on with a series of big hit-ups and backed it up with quality defence.

Danny Buderus (c) 6

His work ethic was terrific, but couldn't come up with a play to drag the Blues back into it. Tried his usual dirty tactics at times and ran on the fifth tackle and lost possession

Jason Stevens 3

Struggled with the pace early on and spent a lot of time off the field. Will be lucky to hold his spot. What was the point of having him in the squad

Willie Mason 7

Tried to get into the game and made a good impact at times, including in the lead-up to Rooney's late try.

Brent Kite 6

Did some good work in defence when he first came on, but drifted out of the game a bit as it wore on.

Trent Waterhouse 4

Didn't get a lot of game time and that could be a bad sign for him when it comes to selection for Origin III. Could be down to Goulds poor use of the bench but made no impact in little time on the field

Craig Wing 6.5

Had some good moments after coming off the bench in the first half, but not as dangerous as usual.