x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Queensland win record Origin series

The Maroons clinch a record fourth straight Australian State of Origin rugby league series with a 24-14 win over New South Wales.

Ben Creagh of NSW is tackled by the Maroons defence during game two of the State of Origin series.
Ben Creagh of NSW is tackled by the Maroons defence during game two of the State of Origin series.

SYDNEY // Queensland scored three tries off turnovers in the first 25 minutes as they beat New South Wales 24-14 today to clinch a record fourth straight Australian State of Origin rugby league series. The Maroons silenced a pro-New South Wales crowd of 80,400 at the former Olympic stadium with their early tries, the first in the sixth minute against the run of play by Billy Inglis and the second when Israel Folau ran through some porous Blues defence 15 metres from the try line.

Captain Darren Lockyer scored Queensland's third try in the 24th minute off yet another turnover and Johnathan Thurston kicked his third successive conversion to give the Maroons an 18-0 lead. New South Wales got their first points on the board five minutes later - this time off a Queensland turnover - as Jarryd Hayne ran the length of the field for a try after intercepting a pass and captain Kurt Gidley kicked the conversion. Hayne scored his second try with a minute left in the half, cutting the deficit to 18-10 at the break. New South Wales made eight errors or turnovers within 30 meters of their goal-line to largely contribute to their own downfall.

David Williams touched down in the 62nd minute for New South Wales to pull within four points, but Cameron Smith scored a clinching four-pointer with less than two minutes left to seal the series. It was Queensland's eighth win in 11 matches over the past four years. Queensland won the first match of the best-of-three series 28-18 in Melbourne on June 3, and the final match is scheduled for Brisbane on July 15.

*AP