Pain and scars drive league duo on - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Pain and scars drive league duo on

Wayne Heming 04/07/2008 10:33:12 AM Comments (0)

Hurtful memories and scars from past Origins continue to drive Queensland's front-row "brothers" Petero Civoniceva and Steve Price.

While superstar backs Israel Folau, Billy Slater and Johnathan Thurston bathed in the glory of Queensland's 16-10 series deciding win, it was ageing props Price and Civoniceva who again out-muscled the Blues in the battle for every precious metre.

Thurston and Slater may have produced the knockout blow in the 67th minute in Wednesday's brutal decider.

But it was Price and Civoniceva who absorbed the body shots, refusing to take a backward step under heavy fire.

Since being partnered in the front row after Shane Webcke retired in 2004, the pair have forged a wonderful record.

They've started together 10 times and provided Queensland with seven wins and three Origin series wins, putting them on the doorstep to greatness.

A reflective Price said it was a bagging from critics and some former players that cut deepest after Queensland lost the first game of the 2006 series.

He and Civoniceva often talk about it and use it as motivation.

"It's something I haven't forgotten," said Price after he and Civoniceva continued their domination of the Blues.

"I was in a pretty bad state after it, particularly going into the second game that year.

"We copped a pasting from the media as well as some of the Queensland people we've got a lot of respect for.

"It did hurt pretty bad and it certainly changed my attitude towards Origin for the better.

"I've played a lot better since and we've played a lot better as a combination.

"You do take it personally when it comes from people you respect and it hits home even more so."

Meninga described the Fijian-born Civoniceva as a "very special" footballer when presenting him with the Queensland camp's player of the series award after the win.

"Petero just keeps turning up for every Origin game," said Meninga.

"He does all the hard yards for us, he just does things that are required of an Origin player.

"Some players can play for Origin and last one or two games and some players are Origin players and they deserve a long Origin career.

Civoniceva struggled for words to describe what it meant to win the award.

"I don't know quite what to say," said the humble forward.

"This is a massive honour."

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