‘Fantastic’ Trbojevic wins Wally Lewis Medal

Tom Trbojevic has been awarded the Wally Lewis Medal as the 2021 State of Origin player of the series after a spectacular showing.

While Queensland took out Origin III 20-18, the NSW Blues claimed the series 2-1, with the win sealed in the opening two matches, where Trbojevic was dominant.

Although he was held scoreless in the Origin finale, the 24-year-old Blues star ended the series with four tries in three matches, including a hat-trick in NSW’s 50-6 triumph in the Origin opener.

Trbojevic’s Game One hat-trick was incredibly his second in two Origin series after he destroyed Queensland in the Blues’ 2019 victory.

“To Queensland, I want to say thank you for the series, too good tonight so well done on that,” Trbojevic said after receiving the medal.

“To our boys, a disappointing one tonight but it’s been an absolute pleasure doing this.

“To Freddy and the coaching staff, a big thank you to you guys, couldn’t have done it without you. All the best guys.”

NSW great Peter Sterling credited Trbojevic for his ability to dominate despite not playing in the customary fullback position he has made his own for Manly.

“He was fantastic,” Sterling told Nine.

“[He played] a different position to what we normally see each week for his club, but whatever number he has on his back, especially at this level with elite players, he wants to be around the football.

“I thought they controlled him fairly well in the opening 20 minutes tonight, the longer the game went, the better he got. He’s had a phenomenal series.”

Trbojevic is just the fifth NSW player to win the Wally Lewis Medal, joining Craig Fitzgibbon, Anthony Minichiello, Paul Gallen and James Tedesco.

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