I spotted this article in the Goulburn Post (don’t ask me how) and thought it might be of interest to our readers ahead of State Of Origin.
GAVIN Miller is bewildered by the non-selection of Todd Carney.
Geoff Peterson says the Blues are a 10 point better side with the Goulburn raised playmaker in their ranks.
The most talked about position in the Blues squad for State of Origin one was supposed to be settled once and for all on Sunday night.
Instead, the selection of Sydney Roosters five-eighth James Maloney sat poorly with Miller, Goulburn’s finest rugby league product, and fired-up Peterson, a man who’s followed the peaks and troughs of Carney’s career with interest.
“I was surprised, not because I’m critical of Maloney, but because Todd got better as Origin went on last year,” Miller, a former NSW captain, explained.
“I thought he was entitled to be given another opportunity… The fact that Maloney plays with [Mitchell] Pearce at the Roosters shouldn’t matter. Todd’s played more games with Mitchell than Maloney, so that blows that theory out of the water.”
Equally perplexed by coach Laurie Daley’s decision was Peterson, a former teacher to Carney at Mulwaree High School.
“Todd’s first game last year was quiet; he blitzed them in the second game; and in the last he knocked a goal over from the sideline under pressure,” Peterson said.
“I thought his performance set them up nicely for this year.”
This is obviously the opinion of two men who hold a soft spot for the Goulburn-raised Carney, but raises some good points.
After all, did Carney deserve a second go?
He had a great game two but was quiet on the road in games one and three, missing a few kicks.
He also faded in the Grand Final for the Roosters in 2010 with a few sprayed kicks and hasn’t exactly set the world alight with the game on the line, the final against the Tigers in 2010 the notable exception when he set up two brilliant tries to help the Chooks claw back a big deficit.
Meanwhile, The BBQ has been on fire with the boot while his defence has shown a remarkable improvement — five misses a game in 2012, three per game in 2013.
This writer was easy with either getting the shot, as Carney was superb in the Sharks’ upset of the Rabbitohs last Monday, while The BBQ is atop the Weekly Roosters Player Rankings once again after Roosters fans voted him the Tricoulours’ best player through the opening six rounds.
And Roosters fans are perfectly placed to adjudicate on who should have been picked, as they have seen the best of both players.
So lets put it to a vote: who should have been selected for the NSW five-eighth spot? There’ll obviously be some bias in the polls, but given it’s anonymous we here at 26 Rounds would like to think our voters can vote objectively. Right?