Dysart product Matt Sing at the Rockhampton Fitness Centre
Dysart product Matt Sing at the Rockhampton Fitness Centre

Tackling those Blues

NEW forward leader Petero Civoniceva has warned Queensland to be dominant with its tackles to prevent NSW from "having a field day'' around the rucks in Wednesday night's Origin opener in Brisbane.

The Blues have shown their hand in picking a reserve bench based more on forward mobility than power and Civoniceva says they'll try to dictate the tempo of the game. "It's going to be very important that we are (dominant in tackles) because if we're not, guys like Danny Buderus, Craig Wing and their halves are going to have a field day,'' said Civoniceva. "We have to be smart with our defence. "It's important we work hard for one another, get numbers in tackles and put pressure on them, wear them down and break their momentum down.''

Civoniceva, playing his 12th Origin and first without Shane Webcke, said Queensland would miss his bull-like charges. Webcke fearlessly took Queensland forward in the toughest arena in 21 successive Origins between 1998 and 2004. He hung up his representative boots this season to prolong his club career. Only noted ironman Gary Larson played more consecutive games, 24, than Webcke. "It's going to be tough without the big fella,'' said Civoniceva. "He's been the backbone of Queensland and Australian packs for a number of years and is a big loss. But we said the same thing about Gorden Tallis. You miss these great players when they retire but the great thing about our game is we've got so many great kids coming through and a superstar will come along and take his place.



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