New South Wales coach Laurie Daley has confirmed his selection for State of Origin I, to be played at ANZ Stadium on May 27.
“Josh Dugan‘s got the nod,” coach Laurie Daley told reporters Down Under.
“He’s a big match player. He’s played four or five times for New South Wales now and never let us down.
“He’s playing in great form for the Dragons. So he secured the number on eposition and I know he’s looking forward to it.”
Daley was also pleased that Pearce had claimed a spot, a reward for his hard work in recent times.
“I’m excited for Mitch, he’s earned it through his performances and that is what you want to see,” Daley said.
“It’s probably a great example for some of the other guys, when they get a bit of disappointment to go back and work hard on your game.
“The door is never shut and you get back through performance and what you do on and off the field.
“Mitch has come on in leaps and bounds in terms of what you see and I’m assuming when I work with him he’ll be a a lot different player to what he was a couple of years ago.”
New South Wales Blues:
Josh Dugan (St George Illawarra Dragons), Daniel Tupou (Sydney Roosters), Josh Morris (Canterbury Bulldogs), Michael Jennings (Sydney Roosters), William Hopoate (Parramatta Eels), Mitchell Pearce (Sydney Roosters), Trent Hodkinson (Canterbury Bulldogs), Aaron Woods (Wests Tigers), Robbie Farah (Wests Tigers – captain), James Tamou (North Queensland Cowboys), Beau Scott (Newcastle Knights), Ryan Hoffman (NZ Warriors), Josh Jackson (Canterbury Bulldogs)