Bird hopeful of Origin miracle - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bird hopeful of Origin miracle

By David Beniuk And Todd Balym 22/06/2008 08:52:49 PM Comments (0)

NSW five-eighth Greg Bird refuses to give up hope he'll still be a part of the Blues side for next month's State of Origin decider despite suffering a serious knee injury.

Bird damaged the posterior cruciate ligament in his knee in Cronulla's 16-14 win over Parramatta and will be sidelined for between two and six weeks, almost certainly ruling him out of the ANZ Stadium showdown with Queensland on July 2.

"I guess we have to wait and see," he said.

"We get the scans done (Monday) and we will just see how it is.

"A million different things can go wrong with your knee so we just have to wait and see."

Asked if he had given up hope of pulling on a Blues jersey, he said: "Not yet. I usually heal pretty good, I'm not writing myself off yet.

"If it comes back with maybe a slight strain of the posterior cruciate, with a good recovery I might be right in a week and a half."

Bird's loss would be felt by NSW after he was man of the match in Origin I playing in his less accustomed position of five-eighth.

The Blues already have superstar centre Mark Gasnier in doubt with a back problem.

"It did hurt a lot, I remember looking up and seeing the replay and I hyper-extended it which didn't look too good," Bird said.

"It felt awful pretty much and hopefully it is just the shock of it.

"I'm sure they will know whether I am a chance or not to play before the selection process comes through."

A devastated Blues skipper Danny Buderus was also hopeful.

"It's devastating for myself and NSW," Buderus said after Newcastle's 16-14 loss to the Sydney Roosters.

"Knowing Birdy, he's a pretty competitive bloke and he'll be back before we know it."

Bird's injury could re-open the Origin door for Roosters skipper Braith Anasta, who set up his side's three tries with pinpoint kicking.

"It's bad luck for him I suppose and I didn't know he was injured and I feel for him if he's injured," Anasta said.

"It's uncontrollable, I can't control it so what's the point in me talking about it?"

Buderus, though, appeared to back Anasta's inclusion.

"We tried a lot of times to put as much pressure on Braith, his kicking game, and he's just got a fair arsenal there," he said.

"He can step inside you and hook it over the top and Braith would be a pretty handy acquisition for NSW."

Meanwhile, Manly's Brent Kite appeared to win the battle of the props as they seek one position in the Blues pack.

Kite ran for 190 metres and bagged a try in 17 hit-ups and made 19 tackles in Manly's 20-14 win over the New Zealand Warriors.

St George Illawarra's Jason Ryles also had a big game on Friday night, collecting 175m in 21 hit-ups with a huge 35 tackles.

Newcastle's Ben Cross made 94m and 19 tackles while the Roosters' Mark O'Meley made 104m and 21 tackles.

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