1986 State of Origin series

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1986 State of Origin series
Won by New South Wales colours.svg New South Wales (2nd title)
Series margin   3-0
Points scored 116
Attendance 94,840 (ave. 31,613 per match)
Top points scorer(s) New South Wales colours.svg Michael O'Connor (22)
Top try scorer(s) New South Wales colours.svg Michael O'Connor, Wayne Pearce
Queensland colours.svg Dale Shearer (2)

The 1986 State of Origin series was the 5th year that the annual three-match series between New South Wales and Queensland was contested entirely under "state of origin" selection rules. It was the year that New South Wales finally asserted some dominance and won the series in the first ever 3-0 Origin whitewash. It was an inauspicious introduction to Origin coaching for Wayne Bennett who soon afterwards began plotting a reversal of fortunes that would lead to a pending period of Queensland dominance.


Games[edit]

Game I[edit]

27 May[1]
New South Wales colours.svg New South Wales 22–16 Queensland colours.svg Queensland
(4 - 1 t) Garry Jack
(4 - 1 t) Chris Mortimer
(4 - 1 t) Andrew Farrar
(4 - 1 t) Royce Simmons
(6, 3g) Michael O'Connor
(Report) Gene Miles (4 - 1 t)
Greg Dowling (4 - 1 t)
Mal Meninga (8 - 4 g)
Lang Park, Brisbane
Attendance: 33,066
Referee/s: Kevin Roberts
Man of the Match: New South Wales colours.svg Royce Simmons

The Blues finally brought to Origin a passion that had hitherto been associated mainly with Queensland and fielded a formidable halves pairing in Peter Sterling and Brett Kenny that found the measure of Maroons star Wally Lewis. Blues hooker Royce Simmons typefied the newfound New South Wales' spirit when early in the opening game he was knocked senseless, after a vicious hit by Queensland's Greg Dowling. He staggered back into position, falling over and regaining his feet then waving trainers away as he took his place in the defensive formation before pulling off a try-saving tackle on his own tryline soon after.

The Blues led 12-2 early but by half-time the lead was cut to 12-10. Two minutes after the break Queensland forged to the front when prop Greg Dowling scored after centre Gene Miles recovered a Wally Lewis bomb. The Maroons then began to tire and Man Of The Match Royce Simmons scored from dummy half to spark a magnificent comeback, dummying past a bewildered Wally Lewis. A mistake by Queensland winger Dale Shearer opened the door for Blues' centre Andrew Farrar to score his first Origin try and the Blues led 22-16 with 13 minutes remaining and were able to hold onto a lead.

Simmons was interviewed in 2010: "The Queenslanders were going 'Ooohh, yeahh' when I fell over. They were really cheering me or bagging me or something...everytime I fell over. All I kept thinking was 'I can't get replaced; if I get replaced there goes my opportunity' so I struggled to get back up and few minutes later I was OK. It was a good win...and we played a very good Queensland side to do it"[2]

Game II[edit]

Queensland's preparation for game II was disrupted by injuries to key players and selectors were forced to name one of the Maroons' most inexperienced line-ups.

10 June[3]
New South Wales colours.svg New South Wales 24–20 Queensland colours.svg Queensland
(4 - 1 t) Andrew Farrar
(4 - 1 t) Brett Kenny
(4 - 1 t) Wayne Pearce
(4 - 1 t) Noel Cleal
(8 - 1 t, 2 g) Michael O'Connor
(Report) Dale Shearer (4 - 1 t)
Les Kiss(4 - 1 t)
Ian French (4 - 1 t)
Bob Lindner(4 - 1 t)
Mal Meninga (4 - 2 g)
SCG, Sydney
Attendance: 40,707
Referee/s: Barry Gomersall
Man of the Match: New South Wales colours.svg Peter Sterling


Before a record Origin crowd of 40,707 at the SCG, the class of Lewis and Queensland again led into the second half 16-12 after 52 minutes before Sterling and Kenny engineered a New South Wales onslaught. Man-of-the-match Sterling then threw a sweetly timed pass for Kenny to take New South Wales to an 18-16 lead and four minutes later second-rower Noel Cleal crashed over between the posts for an unassailable 24-16 scoreline. Queensland scored in the final minutes through Shearer but their hopes of a last-ditch victory were dashed.

Game III[edit]

For the third year running the final match of the series was a Dead-rubber, but with Test positions on the line for the three clashes with New Zealand and the end of season Kangaroo tour plus the opportunity for New South Wales to become the first team to win 3-0, there was plenty to play for.

1 July[4]
New South Wales colours.svg New South Wales 18–16 Queensland colours.svg Queensland
(9 - 1 t, 3g ) Michael O'Connor
(4 - 1 t) Wayne Pearce
(4 - 1 t) Peter Tunks
(Report) Gary Belcher(4 - 1 t)
Les Kiss (4 - 1 t)
Greg Conescu (4 - 1 t)
Dale Shearer (4 - 1 t)
Lang Park, Brisbane
Attendance: 21,097
Referee/s: Kevin Roberts
Man of the Match: New South Wales colours.svg Brett Kenny


The first half produced one of Origin's most frenetic periods. By the time the teams left the field at the break seven tries had been scored and the scores were locked at 16-all. In the second stanza no more tries were added. The game was controversially won by a Michael O'Connor penalty goal after referee Kevin Roberts had penalised Maroon's skipper Lewis for offside when he appeared to be injured and out of play.[5]

With the victory New South Wales enjoyed the first ever 3-0 series whitewash.

Teams[edit]

New South Wales[edit]

Position Game 1 Game 2 Game 3
Fullback Balmain colours.svg Garry Jack
Wing St. George colours.svg Steve Morris Illawarra colours.svg Brian Hetherington St. George colours.svg Brian Johnston
Centre St. George colours.svg Michael O'Connor
Centre Canterbury colours.svg Chris Mortimer
Wing Canterbury colours.svg Andrew Farrar Parramatta colours.svg Eric Grothe, Sr.
Five-Eighth Parramatta colours.svg Brett Kenny
Halfback Parramatta colours.svg Peter Sterling
Prop Balmain colours.svg Steve Roach
Hooker Panthers colours.svg Royce Simmons
Prop Canterbury colours.svg Peter Tunks
Second Row Canterbury colours.svg Steve Folkes
Second Row Manly Sea Eagles colours.svg Noel Cleal
Lock Balmain colours.svg Wayne Pearce (c)
Replacement Canterbury colours.svg Terry Lamb
Replacement Canterbury colours.svg David Gillespie
Coach New South Wales colours.svg Ron Willey

Queensland[edit]

Position Game 1 Game 2 Game 3
Fullback Wynnum-Manly Colours.svg Colin Scott Canberra colours.svg Gary Belcher
Wing Manly Sea Eagles colours.svg Dale Shearer
Centre Canberra colours.svg Mal Meninga
Centre Wynnum-Manly Colours.svg Gene Miles
Wing Manly Sea Eagles colours.svg Chris Close North Sydney colours.svg Les Kiss
Five-Eighth Wynnum-Manly Colours.svg Wally Lewis (c)
Halfback Redcliffe colours.svg Mark Murray
Prop Wynnum-Manly Colours.svg Greg Dowling Balmain colours.svg Cavill Heugh Eastern Suburbs colours.svg Brad Tessmann
Hooker Redcliffe colours.svg Greg Conescu
Prop Eastern Suburbs colours.svg Dave Brown Panthers colours.svg Darryl Brohman Balmain colours.svg Cavill Heugh
Second Row Redcliffe colours.svg Bryan Niebling Wynnum-Manly Colours.svg Bob Lindner Redcliffe colours.svg Bryan Niebling
Second Row North Sydney colours.svg Gavin Jones
Lock Wynnum-Manly Colours.svg Bob Lindner Wynnum-Manly Colours.svg Ian French Wynnum-Manly Colours.svg Bob Lindner
Replacement Western Suburbs colours.svg Peter Jackson
Replacement Wynnum-Manly Colours.svg Ian French Eastern Suburbs colours.svg Brad Tessmann Wynnum-Manly Colours.svg Ian French
Coach Queensland colours.svg Wayne Bennett

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ 1987 Game 1 at nrlstats.com
  2. ^ Sydney Morning Herald, (Daniel Lewis) May 3rd, 2010
  3. ^ 1986 Game 2 at nrlstats.com
  4. ^ 1986 Game 3 at nrlstats.com
  5. ^ Steve Ricketts, Barry Dick, Paul Malone (23 May 2012). "The 30 greatest controversies in 30 years of State of Origin series". The Courier-Mail. Retrieved 26 May 2012. 

Sources[edit]

  • Big League's 25 Years of Origin Collectors' Edition, News Magazines, Surry Hills, Sydney

External links[edit]