NSW forward Beau Scott says he’ll leave the call on who will play centre for the Blues in State of Origin II for coach Laurie Daley.
NSW hardman Beau Scott appears undaunted by the prospect of being thrown back to centre for game two in Sydney, despite a poor track record at State of Origin level.
As Blues coach Laurie Daley battles with his personnel crisis on the right edge, Scott is in the frame to move from second-row to centre to help NSW guard Maroons superstar Greg Inglis.
Queensland will be keeping a keen eye on proceedings, because NSW have been down this road before and things didn’t go to plan.
In 2010, Scott debuted at right centre for Origins II and III, and Queensland romped to their first and only clean sweep since 1995.
For all his toughness and defensive nous, Scott simply didn’t have the speed to compete with Inglis for 80 minutes – and, four years on, the Newcastle forward hasn’t become any quicker.
However, NSW are short on options in a key position and there’s plenty to be said for picking Scott and not throwing an inexperienced man to the lions.
The 30-year-old was an unsung hero for the Blues in game one, overcoming physical illness on the field to shut down some threatening attacking raids with the match on the line.
For the final 10 minutes of the match, Scott was forced to centre, with Josh Morris finally succumbing to injury.
According to Scott, Daley remains undecided for game two, but he’s happy to do a job wherever he’s required.
“No, I haven’t spoken to him about any of that stuff,” said Scott, who will return from a neck strain suffered in Origin I for Newcastle on Sunday against the Wests Tigers.
“They’re (coaching staff) there to make a decision on the make-up of the team.”
In game two, 2010 – Scott’s debut – Queensland smashed NSW 34-6, with Inglis and Darius Boyd having a field day down the right.
For game three, Boyd scored again as the Maroons swept the Blues with a 23-18 result in Sydney.
Unless Daley was to go for a left-field rookie selection, his two most obvious choices for right centre are Scott or Will Hopoate.
Picking Scott out wider means Daley could bring Greg Bird into the starting line-up without having to drop anyone.
If Hopoate isn’t preferred at centre, he’s tipped to play on the wing, given he was 18th man for Origin I.
Scott described game one as the toughest, most fatiguing match he’d played in.
He says he gained confidence from the experience and believes the Blues’ mindset won’t change now they’re up 1-0.
“I haven’t won in Queensland before so it was good to go up there and get the win,” he said.
“But we’ve got a job to do in Sydney and, hopefully, we can get the win across the line.”