BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 11: Cameron Munster of Queensland fends off a tackle by Damien Cook of the Blues during game three of the State of Origin series between the Queensland Maroons and the New South Wales Blues at Suncorp Stadium on July 11, 2018 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

It’s that time of year again! With State of Origin one right around the corner here is my predicted team for Queensland in SOO1 at Suncorp Stadium.

I have left Cameron Smith out of my team but don’t be surprised if the future immortal and Queensland great makes a return to the Origin arena this year.

Cameron Munster is the new captain of Queensland replacing the recently retired Greg Inglis and partnering him in the half’s is Manly’s Daly Cherry-Evens who I believe will be fit and ready for origin one.

Making their debut I have Parramatta No.9 Reed Mahoney. Now I know many won’t be happy with this selection as Mahoney is young but I think his form for Parramatta in the early rounds has been terrific and he is one the reason why they’re doing very well.

Kevin Walters cannot ignore this and he must be picked for the future of Queensland. I’ve put Ben Hunt on the bench to replace Mahoney at some point in the second half.

Predicted Maroons Origin team

  1. Kalyn Ponga
  2. Dane Gagai
  3. Michael Morgan
  4. Will Chambers
  5. Corey Oates
  6. Cameron Munster (C)
  7. Daly Cherry-Evans
  8. Josh Mcguire
  9. Reed Mahoney
  10. Josh Papali
  11. Matt Gillet
  12. Felise Kaufusi
  13. Jai Arrow
  14. Ben Hunt
  15. Dylan Napa
  16. Matt Scott
  17. Christian Welch

Note: The Welch selection was made pre-injury

Yet again this is my opinion and if you have a problem just tell me in the comments.

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  1. 1. Kalyn Ponga
    2. Dane Gagai/Feldt
    3. Marion Seve/Gagai/Morgan(if DCE can play)
    4. Will Chambers
    5. Corey Oates
    6. Cameron Munster
    7. Michael Morgan/DCE(if can play)
    8. Josh Papalii
    9. Ben Hunt
    10. Dylan Napa
    11. Matt Gillett
    12. Josh McGuire
    13. Jai Arrow
    14. Anthony Milford/Reed Mahoney
    15. Joe Ofahengaue
    16. Jarrod Wallace
    17. Felise Kaufusi
    18. David Fifita

    If DCE is out then O’Niell will be picked which I think would be a massive mistake. O’Neill has already been dropped once and even though he is scoring tries, has been shocking defensively and will be up against Latrell Mitchell, which is why I would pick Seve. Seve is a big frame for a centre and has really improved that edge defensively for the storm in Scott’s absence. in origin it’s all about the hard work and 1% not just finishing off tries which is where Seve truly shines over O’Niell. even another option would be Hymel Hunt.

    Josh McGuire would be a great fit for the right edge, really strong defensively and could use some of that grub against the main side of nsw attacks to try and get them off there game. Also I think Kaufusi fits the middle better in origin then on a edge. As for Welch I don’t actually think he has been playing that good at all but for some reason there is this push for him to be a origin player. even though Wallace isn’t playing his best footy as been head and shoulders above Welch and the same goes for Ofahengaue.

  2. I think Smith will be added on the Monday prior to the game, DCE will not play.

    Smith (c)

    Hunt, Fifita, Napa, Scott/Joe O/Wallace

  3. I 100% agree with your starting 13, player for player it’s exactly who I had. Only changes I would make are to the bench. I’d have it look like

    14. Hunt
    15. Napa
    16. Ofahungue
    17. Hess/Wallace

    I think Matt Scott is far to old and past it. In his Cowboys team that keeps getting beat he has McLean, McQuire, Cooper occasionally Hess and Taunalolo but he hasn’t do anything. They haven’t been able to lay a good platform for Morgan and whoever his halves partner is to work off.

    Welch is an average prop in a good Melbourne team. He again has really good team mates Bromwich bros, Kaufusi, Finucane, NAS and Smith and he just gets praise for doing his part. Hes not exactly putting big shots on players or pumping players off to score tries, he’s playing a role in a winning team with a good pack.

    David Fifita who lots of people want. He’s to young and inexperienced. He bearly gets 20 mins a game for the struggling broncos. Yes in a few year or Ben next year he could get a spot but he’s just got on that level yet. Same goes with Jayden Su’a

    Ofahungue I think has been one of the broncoes form middle forwards, which doesn’t say a hell of a lot. But what he has done consistently is 100+ metres, 25+ tackles, either a line break or a few tackle breaks and a couple good hits. He brings good energy off the bench and I think is the sort of player who would rise to the occasion.

    As for the last bench spot, I don’t really know. With Napa and Ofa, I wanted to put a second rower but there isn’t one really putting his hand up and I’ve opted to instead give it to Hess or Wallace cause everyone knows both players can preform awesome on their day but they haven’t shown it recently. They would be able to be called upon if needed and could either play there socks off or hopefully just not let you down. Both players could also have good bench impact.

  4. If DCD isn’t fit, I think he will be. I’d move Hunt to start at halfback and bring in Milford. I know he’s in and out of form but he’s played origin before, he will definitely bring a spark and quickness into the game and he can cover the backs at a stretch.

  5. I’m super worried that Kevvie will pick O’Neill aswell…. 😫 Here is too hoping the selectors step in.

    Also I wouldn’t be completely against Mbye at 14, he can cover far more positions than Milford and has been playing reasonably well last couple weeks.

    I’d go same expect Kaufusi to start McGuire to front and Napa to bench. And Mbye at 14.

  6. Not going to lie completely forgot about mbye and would definitely be the utility. I could also see someone like Rhyse Martin getting a shout if he has a strong couple of weeks

  7. I like Fifita on the bench, Gillet can’t get a full game of NrL out at the moment so a bit of edge coverage will be good, Joe o is totally the form bench prop right now, I would like to see him play.

  8. Yeah I rate Joe O this season. Gillet might not get 80 that’s why I lent towards Hess off the bench plus McQuire, Joe O and Arrow could cover some minutes out in the channels if needed

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