New South Wales has proven how dominant their forward pack is so far this series, but there is one position the Blues are being beaten in over and over again – the wing.
Brett Morris scored New South Wale’s second try on Wednesday, adding another try to his rep tally. But what little realise is, it’s the Blue’s first try scored by a winger in over three years.
The last try scored by an NSW winger came back in Game I, 2014, scored by the very same man at Suncorp Stadium. It simply highlights that the NSW’s halves are simply failing to get the ball out to the men out wide.
While the Blues have scored 2 tries through wingers in the last 11 games, the Maroons have managed a stunning 15 tries through wingers in the same 11 games.
It begs the question – are New South Wales not attacking the wings enough or are the Blue’s wingers not good defenders?
Since the first game of the 2014 series, Brett Morris, Blake Ferguson, Josh Mansour, Will Hopoate, James McManus and Daniel Tupou have all lined up on the edges, all quality players, all internationals.
Meanwhile, New South Welshmen have fared much better in the centres, scoring 8 tries in 11 games. Maybe the centres simply aren’t passing out wide?
Next year poses an interesting question over the Blues wingers. While Blake Ferguson and Brett Morris are the incumbents, youngster Tom Trbojevic and 2016 Origin debutant Josh Mansour missed the opening match through injury. All possess speed, size and stunning finishing ability, and set up an intriguing battle in the opening months of 2018.
No matter who lines up on the flanks for New South Wales next year, Laurie Daley will have his fingers crossed that they contain the Maroon’s wingers, and do some damage of their own. But first, Ferguson and Morris have Game III to prove they should line-up in sky blue gain next year.