Fittler warns Buderus of Origin pitfalls - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Fittler warns Buderus of Origin pitfalls

By Steve Jancetic 30/06/2008 06:44:56 PM Comments (0)

Memories of his own Origin farewell nightmare have prompted former NSW great Brad Fittler to warn outgoing Blues skipper Danny Buderus not to over-inflate his Blues finale.

Fittler admitted to producing "the worst game I ever played" as he bowed of Origin football in 2001, Queensland trouncing the Blues 40-14 in the series decider in Brisbane.

The shocker burned at Fittler, so much so that he jumped at the chance to come out of representative retirement in 2004 when he righted the wrongs of his first farewell to steer the Blues to an emotional series win.

"In 2001 it was most probably the worst game I ever played, it was a game where I was at a low point," Fittler said.

"(The pressure) did swamp me and I didn't handle it very well at all."

Buderus was two games into his reign as NSW skipper when Fittler returned for a second goodbye, and on Wednesday night the Newcastle veteran will break Fittler's record of 14 appearances as Blues captain as well as Paul Harragon's mark of 20 straight Origin games.

It will also be Buderus' Origin finale, Fittler believing his former Blues teammate is better placed than he was to bow out a winner.

"I don't think (the pressure) will (affect) Danny because of where he is in his life," Fittler said.

"He's playing footy differently, and the ingredients he bases his game on, his toughness, the courage, that's exactly what these games are about."

But that didn't stop Fittler issuing a warning to Buderus and the Blues.

"As long as he makes sure and the team makes sure it's about the footy and the game and let Beddsy look after it," Fittler said of the farewell.

"He's always been composed, he's always been tough and they're the key ingredients to go into a game like this.

"I think he'll do it easy ... he's designed for these tough games."

Buderus said he'd tried not to waste too much nervous energy thinking about Wednesday night.

He said he would tell his teammates not to dedicate their Origin III performance to him, claiming representative careers were too short to `do it' for someone else.

Buderus though will be doing everything in his powers to ensure a happy ending to his time in the sky blue.

"I'm pretty content to move on, but there's something missing and that's obviously on Wednesday night," Buderus said.

"A lot of my memories of my football career will be of Origin, good times and bad times."

Fittler said he couldn't think of anyone better to overtake his captaincy record, admitting he felt like somewhat of an imposter as holder of the mark.

"I got my captaincy by default through the Super League period and Beddsy's earned every one of his,' Fittler said.

"He was given the captaincy at a pretty tough time too and he's played the same game for NSW every single time, he's been our best player nearly every time he's played."

And while the captaincy record will go down as a major accomplishment in a stellar career, Buderus said it wouldn't be a motivating factor as he led the Blues onto ANZ Stadium for the final time.

"Wednesday night, any record that does go down there, I'd give it all back just to win this game," he said.

"The fond memory that I want is to hold the shield up."

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