It's Bronco Time
- Aug 27, 2008
When I initially made this thread, I thought it was one of the more forgettable series.
While the games were close, it didn't seem like either side brought their A game and ultimately it was just another comfortable Origin victory.
I decided to let it stew for awhile.
Where did it all begin?
You'd have to go all the way back to December when Mal was appointed the Kangaroos coach. It was a well deserved honour, but it put the Queensland side in a bind. Who could possibly replace the most successful Origin coach of all-time?
The premiership winning coach? Nope, Green like what he had at the Cowboys and wasn't willing to give that up.
Kevie was like that kid in class who keeps his hand up, begging for the teacher to pick him. After the QRL had surveyed the scene, they eventually went with the former Broncos great.
Kevie had been apart of the cause before, he was next in-line, but without any NRL experience to point to and a less than stellar stint over in Les Catalans there were plenty of question marks.
Plenty more arose after the Emerging Origin camp. In what may have been the worst start to an Origin coach's career, eight emerging Origin players were suspended from this year's series.
A weaker coach would have relented and fined the boys, but Kevie made a firm decision that would define his tenure as Origin coach.
If nothing else, I'll remember the series for Kevie weathering the storm and ensuring this current crop of champions didn't miss a beat.
The New Faces
Corey Oates, Justin O'Neil, Gavin Cooper, Matt Moylan, Josh Mansour, Adam Reynolds, Wade Graham, Tyson Frizell, Dylan Walker, Jack Bird, James Tedesco...in a lot of ways this series reminded me of 89 with a bunch of new faces making a name for themselves in the Origin arena.
On top of that Darius Boyd, Dane Gagai, Josh Papalii, Josh McGuire, Matt Gillett, James Maloney, Blake Ferguson, Andrew Fifita all had big moments that may go down in Origin folklore.
All in all, it was a transitional year. Kevie kept the Maroons on track while the Blues took some positives steps forward.
Spot on BP
Above all else, this series defined Walters as a coach
He has shown himself to be a no-nonsense guy who will demand respect, not afraid to punish those who break the rules
He also showed he is intelligent enough to work with his superstars, listening to their opinions, and learning from their experience
One wonders what would happen at the Tigers if Taylor took a similar approach?