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Orford Not Out Of Origin: Sheens

Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by King, Apr 29, 2008.

  1. King

    King Active Member

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    Orford not out of Origin: Sheens

    By Brent Read and Margie McDonald
    April 29, 2008 A DAY after his representative career looked dead and buried, Manly's Matt Orford has emerged as a leading contender to play half-back for New South Wales in the opening State of Origin game.

    It is believed Orford, overlooked for the City side named on Sunday, is one of three half-backs under consideration for Origin I, to be played at Sydney's ANZ Stadium on May 21.

    The other contenders are Country half-back Brett Finch and Newcastle and Australia utility player Kurt Gidley.

    It is understood City pair Mitchell Pearce and Peter Wallace, as well as Country five-eighth Todd Carney, would need to produce big performances in the City-County match on Friday night to have any chance of playing for the Blues.

    Orford has been in good form for Manly and was a surprise omission from the City team. The selectors opted for Pearce in the starting side and Wallace on the bench.

    City coach Tim Sheens acknowledged that Orford was not out of the running, stating that both Pearce and Wallace were merely being groomed this week.

    "I don't think the young halves would be thinking NSW at this stage. I think they'd be just happy to get through this game - get out there and do what they can," Sheens said of the Sydney Roosters and Brisbane halves.

    "I don't think at this stage they would be thinking 'blue jumper'. I'd be surprised if Craig Bellamy (NSW coach) went to a young fella."

    Sheens has asked Bellamy to address the City side this week to remind them the annual grudge match is still a genuine trial for NSW positions.

    "Obviously the motivation for our guys isn't the metropolitan area. We're not playing for that, we're playing for the blue jumper," Sheens said.

    Regarding Orford, Sheens said it was ultimately Bellamy's call.

    "A couple of years ago (2006) young (Brett) Finch got pulled out of a club game and straight into Origin," said Sheens, a former NSW coach.

    "But I can't answer for Craig. He's coached Matty so if he feels that's the best option, that's the way he'll go."

    City assistant coach and former Manly premiership-winning halfback Geoff Toovey, who is now a member of the Sea Eagles' coaching staff, said the captain would have taken the omission hard.

    "He'll be disappointed but this will spur him on to put in some more big performances and force the selectors' hands when it comes to Origin time," Toovey said.

    Asked if he thought there was any aspect to Orford's game that troubled the selectors, Toovey said: "I can't think of anything."

    Manly have the bye on the weekend before meeting the Broncos at Suncorp Stadium on May 11.

    Even Pearce and Wallace admitted the NSW No7 jersey was a long way from their thinking.

    "I'm not putting that pressure on myself because it wasn't my goal anyway. Now I'm in the (City) side, I'll just be doing my best," Pearce said.

    Wallace knows a one-off City-Country match would not be the sole guide used by selectors.

    "It's another goal but I'd have to play very well in the game on Friday and for the weeks following to stake a claim," Wallace said.

    "I'm not going to think about it too much."

    The former Penrith five-eighth credits his move to Brisbane for enhancing his representative chances.

    "Going to the Broncos and being coached by Wayne (Bennett) and having quality players like Darren (Lockyer), Justin (Hodges) and Karmichael (Hunt) around you helps your game.

    "That's been the biggest side to it, learning the technical things about improving my game."

    Wallace can also play hooker. Sheens intends using him at hooker part-time on Friday night
     
  2. DSM5

    DSM5 Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Orford's no chance.  The problem he has is his inability to steer the crew around and put something on when in the attacking 20.  And his long kicking game, he hasn't one.  I guess he'll do for us as there's no-one bursting from PL or the twenties. 
     
  3. Dan

    Dan Administrator Staff Member Administrator 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Last 2 games he has been doing quite well in all those departments DSM5
     
  4. willstyles

    willstyles Active Member

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    I have to agree, Orford has been in good touch for the past fortnight. I don't think he has been outstanding, but he has done everything within his powers to get us home and we've done it two weeks running.

    The best thing I've seen is that he doesn't seem concerned about "needing" to throw the final pass like perhaps he has been in the past. Over the past few years he has liked the hero play, but against Parra for example with the game on the line he sucked in two defenders, got the ball to Glenn Stewart who got to pass the money ball to L'Estrange.

    Reminded me of that game against Saints last year where were on their try-line and needing a try. If we spread the ball we have a very good chance of scoring, instead Orford stepped inside and went himself - only came up short by about a metre, but it was enough to lose us the game.

    He deserved a shot at City, but really.....they know what he is going to do. As a Manly fan I'm much happier for him to not be in the team though.
     
  5. Kiwi Eagle

    Kiwi Eagle Moderator Staff Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Just on Orford, i am pretty sure it was him but havent seen a replay yet, but i think one of his line dropouts went over 50m on the fly, i was very impressed

    Have noticed Lyon taking the line kicks lately
     
  6. Utility Player

    Utility Player Well-Known Member

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    As the article says Bellamy has coached Ox so knows his capabilities. He may go a hell of a lot better in a team with more go to men and say Anasta outside him to do the long kicks.
     
  7. Canteen Worker

    Canteen Worker Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Orford has 9 Dally M points, ahead of a lot of the test team, so you would have to think that he is doing something right.

    I feel sorry for Mullen, last year the Messiah, this year not even in the pick. I hate the way NSW are looking for another dominant 'Joey' when that is unlikely to happen. Pick a good half and stick with him for a bit.
     
  8. DSM5

    DSM5 Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    OK, Orford has the occasional good game (two lately), but consistently his games are average and that's why he won't get picked.  Watch how many times he runs across field hoping to pick up a runner and gets tackled.    Whose fault? maybe the playmakers?  Watch the 'kicks over the top' when a 'grubber' would have been more effective.  Replays are a wonderful thing but when it's the time for instant, effective plays, Orford often comes up short.  In the attacking zone when the plays come of, it's generally down to speed from Stewart or mistakes from the opposition.  Look carefully.  I'm not saying the guy's useless, he's just not the game winning half NSW will need to defeat QLD.  He'd be alright for Australia though as NZ are crap. 
     
  9. Garts

    Garts Well-Known Member

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    I would go Orford, no point throwing a young half in just yet.  Probably next season. 

    Based on that we have Orford, Finch and Kimmorley.  Out of those 3 I would rather Orford at Manly, he has a better attacking game than the others, better short kicking game, the only thing he is lacking is the long kick but NSW have Anasta for that, would be crazy to pick anyone else imo.
     
  10. DSM5

    DSM5 Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    A better attacking game?  What planet are you on Garts?  Of the three mentioned, none of them are any good, and that's why Gidley's name is up there.  I'd like to think Carney would do as half or at least partner Gidley at 5/8.  Anasta's only got a long kicking game imo.  I well remember last years game when we made him look very ordinary and other teams are waking up to him now.  He didn't win the 'overrated' medal for three years for nothing.   
     
  11. Garts

    Garts Well-Known Member

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    He is the best of that bunch, the others are too young and Gidley is no farking half, you need a half at Origin level not a stop gap.  If the forwards go well Orford will do the job required better than any other, this shows the lack of quality halves NSW have.
     
  12. PONTIAN SEA EAGLE

    PONTIAN SEA EAGLE Well-Known Member

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    He really needed to be picked for city to be looked at, it's an uphill battle for him i reckon as selection i think stems from that game.
     
  13. DSM5

    DSM5 Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Garts, he might be the best of those three, but those three are just not playing well.  Carney and Gidley will be the halves pairing.  Gidley might not be a regular half but he's better than your original three.  I agree with your assessment regarding the dearth of NSW born halfbacks.  This is the fault of selectors who forever played Johns, even when injured or drugged up, to the detriment of developing any others.
     
  14. Kiwi Eagle

    Kiwi Eagle Moderator Staff Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Why shouldn't they have played Johns ? Leaving him out when available would just be stupid

    At what point this season do we drop an influential member of our side so we can develop someone ?
     
  15. Garts

    Garts Well-Known Member

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    If you think Carney is ready you are on drugs, he is a player with loads of potential just not ready for origin.  I have seen a number of Canberra games where they have been attacking and the ball gone to a forward on the last tackle or something dumb, a dominant half needs to take control and not let that happen.

    So you agree he is not the best of those 3.  It will either be one of those 3 or Gidley if the whispers are true, based on that I would go for Orford as Gidley is no half and the other 2 are a notch below Orford.  Just because he can play the odd good game for Newcastle at half does not mean he should be the NSW half.
     
  16. willstyles

    willstyles Active Member

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    All of the contenders from last nights game were impressive I thought.

    Anasta was very good in the first half, Finch laid on a few nice kicks for tries, Pearce was quality for a youngster but probably showed he is 12 months away from State of Origin. Carney was good as well, he's a great running 5/8. Not an organising half just yet, but he's got so much ability... long kicking game wasn't great from Carney though - found City's back three on the full every time.
     
  17. DSM5

    DSM5 Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Both halves last night weren't particularly good.  The top three from Qld make them look very average.  What last nights game did expose is the Storm winger is hopeless as is Rooney.  High kicks to both of them in the future.  Carney will get a gig and should get picked ahead of Anasta to partner Gidley.  Why isn't the game played in the country?  Don't they like league in Dubbo?       
     
  18. SilentBob

    SilentBob Well-Known Member

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    I liked seeing Finch miss that line kick right at the end, Gould was basically writing off Orford after he did it a couple of weeks ago in the middle of a game, Finch stuffed it up when the game was hinging on where he put it out.

    The game didn't do anything to push Orford out of the selectors minds.
     

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