Queensland winger Will Chambers’ State of Origin debut has been hailed as one of the best by coach Mal Meninga.
As far as Mal Meninga is concerned, Will Chambers’ State of Origin debut was as good as any in the 35 years of the rugby league competition.
The Melbourne Storm flyer, for so long an emergency player in Queensland squads, finally got his chance to don a Maroon jersey in Wednesday’s series finale in Brisbane.
The 26-year-old had to overcome the drama of an assault allegation following a late night out in Brisbane’s CBD in the build-up to the match.
The claim was dropped by police on Friday without any charges being laid and if Chambers had been distracted by the drama it didn’t show in his display.
Chambers made 16 runs for 157 metres and even recovered from a heavy collision with Josh Reynolds which left him dazed in the latter stages of the half.
A debut try eluded him, Chambers coming closest as he raced towards a grubber kick only for a desperate outstretched hand from NSW winger Daniel Tupou to bat the ball over the dead-ball line.
“One of the best debuts in Origin I would suggest to you,” Meninga said when asked about Chambers’ performance.
“His effort, how good was it? Very pleased for him. He’s been sitting in the wings for a number of years but tonight, he got his chance, and he grabbed it.
“He stepped up. What a great debut.”
Chambers avoided the media after the 32-8 victory but veteran outside back Justin Hodges was only too happy to speak for the winger however.
“Willie was close to playing the first two games and in camp for a long time,” Hodges said.
“It’s good to see him go out there and I think he was one of our best players.”