State Of Origin 2019: Expert Previews

The 2019 State of Origin Series will see NSW try and defend their title with games taking place at Suncorp, Optus and ANZ Stadium.

For all three games in the series, check out the Analysts giving their State of Origin Tips, expert previews and best betting selections on the Betfair Hub.

Go where the value is for State of Origin and head to the Betfair Exchange.


New South Wales v Queensland

July 10, 8:00pm, ANZ Stadium

The Match

New South Wales enter the series decider at ANZ Stadium in Sydney with a decided advantage following a devastating 38-6 win in Perth.

The Maroons were blown off the park in a match that felt about as un-Origin as imaginable with the Trbojevic brothers, James Maloney and James Tedesco just running rampant. On that performance and returning home, face value has the Blues well and truly in the box seat.

Key team changes though, as well as the situation, makes this contest significantly closer. Both teams have been forced into key changes with Kalyn Ponga the biggest absence for Queensland while NSW have replaced the injured Nathan Cleary with the much-maligned Mitchell Pearce.

Pearce has been a disaster at Origin level with just five wins in 18 appearances and not a single series win while most tellingly he has forced just three drop outs in his Origin career.

The last seven games at ANZ have been decided by six points or fewer and Queensland have won the last seven Origin deciders. The Maroons have also won four of the last seven in Sydney so ANZ presents no fear.

This is set to be a heavy track and with it all on the line, this shapes as a close contest where the Maroons offer plenty of value.

 BACK – Queensland +6.5

The Total

The under has hit in 14 of the last 20 Origins and the total has finished on 34 or smaller in 14 of the last 18 live games so the only way to play this one is to bet the under.

The last 10 Origins at ANZ have failed to break 34 to boot. It is hard to see this game featuring a lot of points.

 BACK – Under 34.5 Total Points

Man of the Match

Fullbacks have an outstanding record winning Man of the Match honours at Origin level so going to run with Cameron Munster here. Munster was very good in the series opener and will get a lot more freedom in the fullback role here after switching from five-eighth.

The game is set to be played through the middle with a premium put on strong kick returns and support play, both elements that will put Munster well in the frame.

 BACK – Cameron Munster Man of the Match

New South Wales v Queensland

June 23, 8:10pm, Optus Stadium

The Match

New South Wales have made an absolute meal of this series, one that was there to win. They had Queensland there for the beating in Game 1 but some awful coaching and the dubious selection of Nathan Cleary saw the Maroons pull off a famous win.

Brad Fittler then doubled down and made an astounding seven changes – just three of them forced – including dropping strike centre Latrell Mitchell, naming mediocre prop Daniel Saifiti, playing Jack Wighton in the centres and … it goes on and on and on in what was one of the most disgraceful Origin purges in memory. The Blues are shot. On a short preparation, Queensland go in with significantly more continuity and their confidence up.

Somehow thanks to the selection madness, the Maroons look to be almost on par with the Blues in terms of talent. The strike of Cameron Munster and Kalyn Ponga is important but it is the platform the forwards laid in the opener and look set to do so again in Perth that will prove the difference, The team who has won the opener has wrapped up the series in two in three of the last five and the Maroons have won four of the last six. There is no argument for the Blues in this one.

The Total

The under is the only way to play the total as it nearly always is in State of Origin matches. The under has become a State of Origin staple with 14 of the last 19 going under the total. In the last 17 games where the series has still been alive, 14 have failed to roll over 34 total points.

The total just does not get set low enough with the public failing to believe it will finish below the always low totals. The change in the NSW halves only adds to the confidence of the under.

Man of the Match

Backs have won three of the last four Man of the Match awards and Cameron Munster looks the player who can do the most damage to a fragile looking Blues edge. Munster made a line break and made 146 metres while busting seven tackles. He caught plenty of attention in Game 1 and those players tend to be rewarded later in the series.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – QLD Win

 BACK – Cameron Munster Man of the Match

 BACK – Under 32.5 Total Points

Queensland v New South Wales

June 5, 8:10pm, Suncorp Stadium

The Match

New South Wales match up with Queensland as well as any Blues team have since the early years of this century. There is almost no matchup across the paddock where Brad Fittler’s team is significantly outmatched.

Daly Cherry-Evans is having a better year than Nathan Cleary so the Maroons can perhaps take that one but in nearly every other battle the Blues get at worst a push. That is a huge talent deficit for the Maroons to overcome. They couldn’t do it last year and the gulf is significantly wider in 2019, where Queensland have endured more retirements and key injuries while NSW continue to march on.

Home-field advantage is always viewed as important but the road team has won four straight series openers not played on neutral turf and NSW have won four of the last six series openers. Queensland have an outstanding record at Suncorp with 10 wins in the last 12 but that was during a period of dominance we will never see again on this stage.

New South Wales have too much ability and their preparation seems to have been much stronger.

The Total

There is only one way to play the total and that is to steam into the under. The under is a State of Origin staple with 13 of the last 18 going under the total. In the last 16 games where the series has still been alive, 13 have failed to surpass 34 total points.

Eight straight series openers have finished on 34 points or fewer, averaging just over 24. Series openers are typically the lowest-scoring matches of the series and this does not project to be any different.

Man of the Match

Speed kills and it is going to be speed that bests Queensland in Origin I and perhaps the entire 2019 series. The Blues are blistering across the park and will get plenty of room to work behind a big and aggressive pack. The main beneficiary will be Damien Cook, who will have a field day behind the ruck and is projected to play 80 minutes.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – New South Wales Win

 BACK – Under 33.5 Total Points

 BACK – Damian Cook Man of the Match


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