Cleary’s head-kick sparks fiery Origin opener

By Chris De Silva and Marc Churches

NSW Blues halfback Nathan Cleary could face scrutiny from the match review committee after appearing to kick Queensland back-rower Jai Arrow in the head during the first half of the State of Origin opener.

The incident occurred early in the match when Cleary put up a fifth-tackle kick before he was collected and taken to the ground by Arrow, to which the NSW halfback took exception.

Cleary looked to kick out at Arrow as he got to his feet, with the Queenslander chasing after him as they got into each other’s faces to sort through their frustrations. That prompted teammates to step in to stop the situation from escalating.

The incident and scuffle went unnoticed by referee Gerard Sutton, and no penalty was awarded as play continued.

Cleary’s clash with Arrow was one of two spot fires in the first half of the series opener which was played in tough fashion as always.

The second occurred just on half-time when Cameron Murray took exception to Maroons winger Kyle Feldt pushing Josh Addo-Carr to the ground following a tackle.

Murray pushed Feldt in the chest before the pair engaged in some old-fashioned jumper punches as teammates converged on the scene.

Hilariously, Melbourne Storm teammates Josh Addo-Carr and Cameron Munster got in each other’s faces, as Munster came in to break up the scuffle and became entangled with his dual premiership teammate.

For a daily dose of the best of the breaking news and exclusive content from Wide World of Sports, subscribe to our newsletter by clicking here!

pin up