Blues’ hat-trick hero Tom Trbojevic has been crowned man of the match in the State of Origin opener as NSW decimated Queensland 50-6 in Townsville.
Turbo was at his stellar best, scoring three tries and inspiring the Blues to a thumping 1-0 series lead ahead of Origin II at Suncorp Stadium.
“It was a really quick game and I kind of went roaming which suited me, I was lucky enough to come up on some of the end of those plays, just trying to support and do my best,” Trbojevic said.
“That was the plan, to win the field position battle. We did that really well in the first half and really set up the game.
“I’m glad I’m back always great to play in an arena like that. We’ll enjoy this and move on to the next game”
Rugby league Immortal Andrew Johns renewed his glowing praise of Trbojevic when the 24-year-old stormed onto a James Tedesco flick pass to notch his Origin hat-trick.
“Where he can get in the game, if he stays injury-free, is frightening,” Johns said.
“He has just been on another planet tonight.”
State of Origin Highlights: NSW v QLD – Game 1
Former NSW coach Phil Gould gave Trbojevic an enormous rap during Nine’s post-match coverage.
“I’ve got to say, with all the great players that they had, Tom Trbojevic was eye-wateringly good,” Gould said.
“The contribution from him was spectacular … It’s scary to think how far he will go in this game.
“The impact he’s had on Manly after Manly’s horror start to the season, his club form and then coming in and playing like that in the centres … It’s not his preferred position and to have such an impact the way he did – he’s an extraordinary footballer.”
Queensland legend Paul Vautin added: “He’s going to be Manly’s greatest-ever player.”