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NSW halfback Adam Reynolds has heard the cries for him to make the ball sing in Wednesday’s must-win State of Origin match, so now he’s promising to belt out a tune.
Reynolds knows the Blues have to score more than the four points they offered in their series-opening loss in game one, especially now that they’re on a dry track at Suncorp Stadium.
And that means the NSW’s deadly backline is likely to see more early ball, however the Blues general has ordered his big men to lay down the platform first.
“We need to earn the right to do that. We need to build momentum through the middle,” Reynolds said.
“We can’t be just giving them ball for the sake of it. We need to make the most of the opportunities but no doubt if it is a bit quick they’ll be seeing some ball.
“ANZ Stadium tends to be a bit slippery and Suncorp seems to hold up alright. I’m pretty sure it’s going to be a fast-track up there. If it is a bit quick, they’ll be seeing some ball.”
In speed men Michael Jennings and Dylan Walker, the Blues could just have an edge over the Maroons’ own three-quarter line of Greg Inglis and Justin O’Neill.
Maroons captain Cameron Smith has vowed to get Inglis more than the 14 touches he got in game one, however, Blues coach Laurie Daley believes Walker can be equally dangerous against him.
“I’d be disappointed if they didn’t (target Walker). That’s their go-to side,” Daley said.
“Dylan knows that’s where they go, but Dylan’s a boy that’s got plenty of ability of his own. He’s got plenty of speed and footwork. I wouldn’t be underestimating him.”
Daley said Reynolds provided the composure needed to rein in his youthful backline, of which Michael Jennings is the only member to have played more than five Origin games.
“The young guys, you want them to be excited and you want them to be jumping out of their skin and you want them to be playing what they see,” he said.
“But you also need to have someone to control the game and manage the game. That’s the role of those (Reynolds and James Maloney), to make sure they manage the game.
The Blues need to win on Wednesday to force an Origin decider in Sydney on July 13.