The 2020 State of Origin decider has lived up to expectations with he first half putting in an entertaining thriller at Suncorp Stadium.
After Queensland scored first through Valentine Holmes in the opening three minutes, NSW captain James Tedesco hit back with one of the more bizarre Origin tries.
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A NSW player was escorted off the ball, before an off-side Daly Cherry-Evans went to pick it up, with Tedesco sneaking in to ground the ball.
It was just what NSW needed with the huge Queensland crowd urging their side on.
But an ugly moment has marred the first half with Tedesco knocked out of the game after an accidental knee to the head from Josh Papalii — followed by being shoved back into the turf and lifted and forced back down by Jai Arrow despite being dazed by the head knock.
Queensland players did stand around Tedesco before trainers made it out onto the field but the NSW skipper was clearly unsteady on his feet and following Cameron Munster’s stumble ruling him out of game two, he quickly failed his head injury assessment.
James Tedesco was in a bad way.Source:Getty Images
Replays revealed the moment Arrow lifted and shoved Tedesco back to the turf with rugby league Immortal and NSW legend Andrew Johns labelling it “rubbish”.
“No need for that carry on by Jai Arrow,” he said.
“So he gets the knee here and he’s knocked out. He’s on the ground. That’s just not needed, the extra (from Arrow).
“The game’s hard enough as it is without that rubbish coming into play.”
Andrew Moore on ABC called it “stupid to push him like that!”
Arrow was spotted immediately calling for a NSW medical official to come onto the field to attend to Tedesco after he appeared to realise he was seriously injured.
Jai Arrow went on with it.Source:Supplied
Arrow realised his mistake.Source:Supplied
However, social media was calling for Arrow’s blood.
“Dog act from Jai Arrow. Disgraceful,” The Herald Sun’s Emily Benammar posted on Twitter.
The Australian Jessica Halloran wrote: “That was a revolting move from Jai Arrow.” before adding he “Should be off”.
Former NSW player Keith Galloway also called Arrow a “grub” on Twitter before responding to a commenter that there was “still no need for the carry on”.
People want to talk about how poor It is what jai arrow did to a concussed tedesco or just leave it alone?
Jai Arrow just supplanted Annastacia Palaszczuk as the most disliked Queenslander in Australia. Shaking James Tedesco after he’s been concussed. Must be a Maroon! #Origin
Imagine Tedesco had a serious neck injury and the coward carry on by Jai Arrow severed his spinal cord. #Origin
Yeah sure Jai Arrow probably didn’t realise the Tedesco Ko, but why the need to shake a player on the ground anyway? To prove how big your nuts are?
Some on social media have defended Arrow for not realising Tedesco was knocked out as he grabbed the ankle of forward.
The move meant that Eels fullback and NRL fullback of the year Clint Gutherson went to fullback, while Panthers forward Isaah Yeo moved to the centres.
Having played most of the season in the middle of the field for the minor premiers, Yeo has been exposed on the edge with Queensland targeting the edge.
Early in the second half, Queensland great Paul Vautin said the loss of Tedesco was noticable.
“They‘re missing Tedesco, aren’t they?” he said. “There’s little or no penetration through the middle of the field. Stuff that he normally does.”
Phil Gould agreed: “Big time”.
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