We are very lucky in New South Wales in that we have a whole host of great fullbacks to choose from as we head into the 2021 Rugby League State Of Origin series. You could select any of a handful of players, all of whom would preform brilliantly at State Of Origin level.
The problem is, there is only one jersey with a number one on the back of it.
New South Wales have always had a really bad history of selecting players out of position. You just have to look back to the 2020 State Of Origin series to watch Clint Gutherson being annihilated as he played in the centres.
You can’t go into a State Of Origin series with the hope that a handful of players will perform well playing out of their usual positions at club level, positions where they actually do have form and consistency.
So what does all of this mean? It means somebody who is in great form, who is one of the better players that NSW could select is going to miss out on selection all together.
We have to be ready for it. We have to prepare for it.
Luckily for NSW we have players in every single position who are in great form, available, and who will be able to do NSW proud. They might not be these big name fullbacks, but the point is we don’t have to make do. We can select players in their preferred position, where they are carrying great form from club level. There will be no need to select half the team out of position.
So what will the reaction be if a Ryan Papenhuyzen or Tom Trbojevic isn’t selected in the NSW side? As strange as it seems, it will be the best thing for NSW if we are no relying on playing them out of position to put together a great team.
There is no doubt that if healthy James Tedesco will not only be the Blues fullback, but also their captain. If he is not available, its an embarrassment of riches for the Blues.
We can’t just go filling the NSW backline with fullbacks though. Its going to feel weird playing a State Of Origin match with some great players watching on from the sidelines, but we need to pick the best TEAM we have.
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A well known Rugby League writer, League Freak has established a reputation among supporters of the game for his fearless commentary and unmatched insight. With a reach that spans both sides of the globe, League Freak has produced an independent network that allows him to distribute content to his many thousands of followers. He is the owner and main author of LeagueFreak.com
Sep 22, 2021 0