State of Origin
State of Origin

Blues go back-to-back, first time in more than a decade

It started like a dream for Queensland but ended in a nightmare as NSW came back from the brink to sweep to victory and claim the State of Origin series win in Sydney.

Queensland led 6-2 at once stage and went to the break at 8-8, but a rejuvenated NSW sprung into action in the second half.

Led by Roosters custodian James Tedesco, who was immense at the back for the Blues, NSW dominated the second stanza to claim a memorable 26-20 win on home soil.

It was the first time NSW claimed back-to-back Origin shields since the Blues won three straight from 2003-05.

The Maroons looked the stronger and more consistent of the two sides in the first half.

NSW was first on the board courtesy of a James Maloney penalty goal in the fifth minute.

Queensland hit the lead in the 14th minute when second-rower and former Northern Pride star Felise Kaufusi pounced on a Corey Norman grubber.

Fellow former Pride player Ethan Lowe converted for a 6-2 lead, and added an extra two points in the 28th minute.

The Maroons' 8-2 led disappeared in the 34th minute when Paul Vaughan scored a try, the Maloney conversion levelling the scores.

The second half was all NSW.

Converted tries to Tedesco and Damien Cook helped NSW build a 20-8 lead, a 12-point advantage they held until the 71st minute.

McGuire burst through the Blues defence to give the Maroons momentum and set up a thrilling finish.

With five minutes to play, Lowe smothered a Blues kick and regathered, handing Maroons a full set of six in the Blues half which ended with a converted Josh Papalii try.

NSW would have the last laugh however, as Blake Ferguson charged down the sideline, stayed in the field of play despite the Maroons' defenders best efforts and offloaded to Tedesco for the matchwinner.