2024 State of Origin Game One - Maroons win big in Sydney

2024 Men
2024 Men's State of Origin - NSW v QLD: Game 1 Post-game

The Queensland Maroons have won in emphatic style against 12-man New South Wales Blues in Game One of the 2024 State of Origin Series. The final 38 - 10 scoreline came after Queensland used their numerical advantage to outlast their undermanned opponents.

The Blues had several periods of territory dominance on the back of some brutal defense and a clever kicking game however, Queensland's defense held fast for long periods and they were patient with ball in hand.

New South Wales seemed to get a shot in the arm from the send-off shock by scoring the next try, but the Queenslanders were determined to press the advantage, breaking the line twice to send in Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow for two tries and a 20 to 6 lead.

New South Wales defended gamely on either side of half-time against Maroons

New South Wales managed to keep Queensland Maroons out for the remainder of the half and came out firing in the second half, so when they scored the first try to bring the margin back to 10 points, the question was being asked whether the home side could pull off the seemingly impossible.

For the next 20 minutes, both sides traded forays back and forth, with an almost 40-20 to Nicho Hynes brilliantly saved by Xavier Coates only for Daly Cherry-Evans to successfully nail a 40-20 of his own in what was indicative of the match in general with the Blues almost but not quite as the Maroons were clinical finishers.

Jerome Nanai and Reuben Cotter did a lot of unheralded work in defense with 48 and 46 tackles respectively, while Reece Robson had 50 tackles in the heart of the Blues' defense with Payne Haas laying 42 tackles in just 53 minutes.

Queensland had two tries disallowed by the video referee before they iced the match, with three late tries to win by their greatest margin at the home of NSW Rugby League.

Post-match, the Maroons players acknowledged the coaching of Billy Slater in picking two backs on the bench.

"Billy's a smart coach like that. Anything can happen in the origin arena," Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow told ABC Sport.

NSW Fullback James Tedesco was philosophical in the post-match.

"We fought hard but when you have 12 men for 70 minutes, it just wears you down. I'm proud of the effort … but the fatigue kicked in," Tedesco told ABC Sport.

Game Two will take place in Melbourne on June 26th.

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