Former Rabbitohs skipper and Queensland State of Origin legend Michael Crocker, is excited by the prospects that Greg Inglis’ selection at fullback for the Maroons in Wednesday’s deciding Game III opens up.
After playing the first two games – and the majority of his Origin career – in the centres, Inglis will don the number one jersey at fullback for the Maroons at Suncorp Stadium, taking the place of Storm fullback Billy Slater.
Having played with both custodians during the course of his own club and representative career – a career that included 13 games and three tries for the Maroons – Crocker is well placed to comment on the make-up of the Mal Meninga coached side.
“GI’s a pretty handy replacement,” said Crocker.
“I think what Billy does defensively is probably better than any fullback in the game, so his contribution in that regard by popping up in the right spots – it’s a different style to Greggy, who plays more of a power game, but both those styles have plenty to offer.
“Either way there’s plenty of talent in the Queensland team and that’ll show come Wednesday night.
“He (Inglis) will be able to inject himself where he can, playing at fullback – that’s something that’s a little more difficult to do from centre.
“I think they’re looking at a rotation system as well with Darius (Boyd) so obviously the fatigue factor won’t be as present.
“With that in mind, Greggy and Darius will be able to get rests during the course of the game and that will let them come back as strong as they can with their carries and get them (the Maroons) on the front foot.
“That’s certainly when GI is at his best and no doubt he’ll play a key role in the game.”
In addition to his 13 Origin games, Crocker played a total of 204 first grade games across three clubs (68 games for the Rabbitohs), winning Premierships, while also earning himself six Test caps for the Kangaroos.
Despite his long list of achievements though, Crocker can’t help but still be a fan – the proud Queenslander admitting that he was quietly happy that the 2015 Origin Series was going to a decider this Wednesday.
“Even in Melbourne last game, as a Queenslander I wanted to win, but part of me is also happy that it’s going to a decider up there in Brisbane,” said Crocker.
“It’s already sold out – as I’m sure we all expected – and of course it’s going to be a cracking game.
“There’s lots of talk in all the papers and a whole lot of hype, so I think it’s going to be physical and pretty fun to watch.
“I think it’s going to be very close, but at the end of the day, I don’t care by how many – as long as we’re up by full-time I’ll be a happy man.”