Manly deny Lyon snubbed Origin - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Manly deny Lyon snubbed Origin

By Jim Morton and Todd Balym 25/06/2008 05:46:42 PM Comments (0)

Manly fullback Brett Stewart admits he is stunned by Jamie Lyon's decision to knock back the chance to play for NSW, even though the club deny it to be true.

Lyon wasn't considered for the Blues' vacant centre position for Wednesday's State of Origin decider after he told officials he didn't want to join NSW's camp before game two.

NSW coach Craig Bellamy revealed the knock back request to be on stand-by for Mark Gasnier after Manly supporters were upset their backline star was overlooked in the series.

Lyon's stunning decision saw the Blues choose Joel Monaghan instead for the ANZ Stadium decider after the injured Gasnier was ruled out.

Manly officials said Lyon was carrying niggling injuries during Origin II and would have been unable to train for most of the camp had he joined the Blues.

It is not the first time Lyon has baulked at rep duties, although his decision to pull out of the NSW Country side when selected earlier this year was for family reasons.

The Sea Eagles maintain Lyon would play for NSW if selected, while close mate Stewart said he knew nothing of his teammate's decision.

"I don't know anything about it to be honest. He hasn't mentioned anything to me," said Stewart.

"He is a good mate of mine. Whatever decision he makes I will respect.

"If that's his decision then yeah it's a little bit surprising but I guess he will have a reason if that is true.

"He is a great player. He is a little bit older than me, he has a couple of kids and a family so maybe the thought process changes as you get older."

Lyon's knock back of a sky blue jumper has Queenslanders gloating about their superior Origin spirit with Maroons back-rower Michael Crocker declaring it would never happen across the border.

Crocker said Maroons skipper Darren Lockyer showed how much pride Queensland players have for Origin when he tried to overcome a knee injury to be fit for game two at Suncorp Stadium.

Lockyer was virtually no chance of playing but did all he could to get on the paddock before pulling out two days prior to the game.

"You look at blokes like Darren for the last game," Crocker said.

"He's been there and done that for a lot of times and he still gave himself every chance to come out when deep down inside he knew he may not be right."

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