TOWNSVILLE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 09: Liam Martin, Junior Paulo and Jake Trbojevic sing the anthem before game one of the 2021 State of Origin series between the New South Wales Blues and the Queensland Maroons at Queensland Country Bank Stadium on June 09, 2021 in Townsville, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

NSW coach Brad Fittler has opted to start Parramatta forward Junior Paulo over incoming Blues Angus Crichton and Dale Finucane, with the latter not selected in the 17-man side.

As reported by NRL.comPaulo will start in the front row as Fittler is forced to shuffle is front pack following the withdrawal of Sea Eagles gun Jake Trbojevic due to a hip injury.

Crichton makes his return from suspension and finds a place on Fittler's pine for the potential series-clinching clash, with Finucane's inclusion into the squad coming without a role in the 17-man side.

Finucane will join Campbell Graham in the reserves, while Penrith playmaker Apisai Koroisau will hold his place as the 18th man.

"It’s a good spot to be in at the moment, where you have got Dale on the extended bench. He has been incredible for Melbourne over the last month, so we are in a good spot," Fittler told

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MAY 29: Angus Crichton in action during a New South Wales State of Origin training session at Coogee Oval on May 29, 2018 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

"Angus and Dale are both fit and they have been outstanding for their clubs. The team won’t change much. I feel like Angus will start on the bench and Dale on the extended bench so there’s not much disruption."


James Tedesco
Brian To’o
Latrell Mitchell
Tom Trbojevic
Josh Addo-Carr
Jarome Luai
Nathan Cleary
Daniel Saifiti
Damien Cook
Payne Haas
Cameron Murray
Tariq Sims
Isaah Yeo
Jack Wighton
Junior Paulo
Angus Crichton
Liam Martin
Dale Finucane
Apisai Koroisau
Campbell Graham