Experience the key for NSW, says Lewis
Unlike most of his NSW teammates Luke Lewis has tasted a series victory over Queensland, but the Penrith utility believes the make-up of the 2010 team leaves them well placed to end four years of hurt.
Lewis, who made his Origin debut on the wing in 2004, joins Timana Tahu, Jamie Lyon, Brett Kimmorley and Matt Cooper as the only players named in the side for next Wednesday’s opener in Sydney to have beaten the Maroons.
And after putting a series of injuries behind him, the 26-year-old said the experienced heads named in the NSW side were what’s required to end Queensland’s run of four series wins.
“Queensland are a great side but it is no secret that a lot of their success is down to having some experienced heads in the side like Steve Price, Petero (Civoniceva) Justin Hodges and Darren Lockyer,” Lewis told AAP.
“So it is good to see that we have players like Coops (Cooper), Timana, Noddy (Kimmorley) and Killer (Lyon) around because they have been there and done it and know what it is like to beat them.”
The Maroons will be without Hodges, Ben Hannant, Price and potentially Cameron Smith through injury and have lost tackling machine Dallas Johnson to English Super League, but Lewis will hear nothing of claims Queensland are weaker in 2010.
“I reckon that is what they would want us to think, they love all the talk of being underdogs, but we won’t be falling into that trap, they still have some of the best players in the world on their team,” he said.
“But we have a great chance of beating them, we have two games at home in Sydney, and we need to use that as an advantage and not as something that puts us under pressure.”
Lewis will be up against his close friend and Panthers skipper Civoniceva at ANZ Stadium next week.
The pair shared a coffee on Monday following Sunday’s win over Cronulla, but will not be in contact again until after the game.
“I love Petero to bits, but there will be no phone calls and no contact between now and the game. He sees me as an enemy and it’s the same from me, this is Origin, friendships stay on hold until Thursday.”© AAP 2013
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