The NSW Blues have been named for the first game of the 2017 #Origin series.
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It was an enterprising opening half to the last ever Country vs City clash, with the latter in particular testing the home side with an array of offloads. Yet, the City side also impressed early with their scrambling defence, with Matt Moylan and Paul Gallen denying Paul Vaughan in the 5th minute as he went agonisingly close to posting the first points.
Both sides continued to threaten each other, with City ending the first half with 16 offloads, yet the defence continued to hold firm until a Bryce Cartwright pass was collected by Anthony Don, who sprinted 100 metres to lock things up in the 35th minute. Clinton Gutherson would ensure that his side would head into the break with the lead when he kicked a late penalty goal to make it 8-6 after forty minutes of entertaining footy.
City dominated the field position in the opening stages of the second half and James Tamou took full advantage, steaming through in the 49th minute to score. However, an intercept to Tariq Sims saw momentum turn and Adam Elliot was able to barge over off a Tyrone Roberts pass to reduce the deficit to four. Sims was away again in the 70th minute after fending off multiple players, only for Gutherson to run him down and save what would have been a certain try.
The City victory brings an end to the concept which has been around since 1911 in some form.
Country Origin 10 - City Origin 20
Venue: Glen Willow Regional Sports Stadium
Halftime Score: Country Origin 6 City Origin 8
LeagueUnlimited.com Players of the Match:
3 points - Paul Gallen
2 points - Chad Townsend
1 points - Jack de Belin
COUNTRY ORIGIN (10)
Tries: Anthony Don, Adam Elliot
Conversions: Michael Gordon (1/2)
CITY ORIGIN (20)
Tries: David Gower, James Tamou, Bryce Cartwright
Conversions: Clint Gutherson (2/2), Paul Gallen (1/1)
Penalty Goals: Clint Gutherson (1/1)