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Opinion

Maroons player ratings: Bad defensive reads, a stupid penalty, a crop-top jersey all added up to dud night for Queensland

12th July, 2023
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12th July, 2023
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1557 Reads

They lost the battle, but Queensland still raise the 2023 State of Origin shield as series winners.

Here’s how the Maroons went in game three.

1. AJ Brimson: Handled the NSW kicks consistently but was well contained in attack. Blew a golden scoring chance down 16-6 when his pass went to ground. 6/10

2. Xavier Coates: Dived in twice on Josh Addo-Carr and was left grasping nothing but air as the Blues built their early lead. Wasn’t helped in attack by some ordinary kicks. 5.5/10

3. Valentine Holmes: See above – the corralling defence didn’t work as Holmes was terrorised all night down his side by Cody Walker and friends. 5.5/10

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JULY 12: Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow of the Maroons celebrates with team mates after a try scored by David Fifita during game three of the State of Origin series between New South Wales Blues and Queensland Maroons at Accor Stadium on July 12, 2023 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

(Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

4. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow: Was a threat all night. Scored a fantastic solo try in the shadows of halftime to keep the game alive. 6.5/10

5. Murray Taulagi: Barely sighted in the first half as the Blues made hay on the other side of the park but was much more involved in the second, including a long break. 6/10

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6. Cameron Munster: Emptied the whole kit bag again with smart runs, offloads, deft kicking, some dummy half play and handling what NSW threw his way in defence. He gave his all in every game. 7.5/10

7. Daly Cherry-Evans: Not his best game. A couple of bad reads as the Blues ran riot down the left side and some overcooked play chasing the game. Let’s not overlook how good he’s been this series, though. 5/10

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JULY 12: Reuben Cotter of the Maroons is tackled during game three of the State of Origin series between New South Wales Blues and Queensland Maroons at Accor Stadium on July 12, 2023 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Reuben Cotter. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

8. Reuben Cotter: The workhorse delivered again with another big 80 minutes. Winner of the Wally Lewis Medal as player of the series, and it was very much deserved. 7.5/10

9. Harry Grant: Gave away a stupid penalty on a fifth tackle just after Queensland had turned NSW away … Then they didn’t see the ball for another 10 minutes as the Blues piled on those three tries. Other than that, Grant was pretty good. 7/10 

10. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui: Was the premier forward on the field in the early going and kept rumbling when he came back for his second spell. 7.5/10

11. David Fifita: Strong early presence was rewarded with the game’s opening try, but then spent an hour on the bench before being brought back when it may have been too late. 6/10

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12. Jeremiah Nanai: Like everyone else, he blew his defensive assignment a couple of times during the Blues’ first half scorefest. Had a couple of close cals where he could have scored. 5/10

13. Patrick Carrigan: One of the pillars that the Maroons work around. A massive amount of work, 142 run metres with 63 post contact, turning up again for his state. 6.5/10 

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JULY 12: Patrick Carrigan of the Maroons is tackled during game three of the State of Origin series between New South Wales Blues and Queensland Maroons at Accor Stadium on July 12, 2023 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Patrick Carrigan. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Interchange: 14. Ben Hunt: Kept the dummy half delivery consistent during a relatively short shift and was a fingernail away from making a huge line break. 5.5/10

15. Lindsay Collins: Massive again after arriving in the 22nd minute. Power, speed and intensity in defence from one of Queensland’s best players for the series. 7.5/10

16. Moeaki Fotuaika: He’s a quality Origin forward, MoFo. He gives consistent, strong running and hard defence. Didn’t get a long stint, but kept the line moving when he was on. 6/10

17. Corey Horsburgh: Came on at the 50th minute and involved himself in everything right away. Also unveiled the first crop top State of Origin jersey. Can anyone find him one that fits? 5.5/10

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