Carr comments to spur on Folau: Lockyer - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Carr comments to spur on Folau: Lockyer

By Wayne Heming 10/06/2010 07:38:04 PM Comments (0)

Enraged NSW official Geoff Carr's push to rub Israel Folau out of State of Origin could prove the edge Queensland need to inflict a fifth straight series loss on the Blues on Wednesday night, according to Maroons captain Darren Lockyer.

Lockyer and coach Mal Meninga were privately seething on Thursday that Carr had effectively guaranteed the AFL more media exposure with his threat to change the rules to ban Folau from the third Origin game in Sydney on July 7.

The usually-conservative Lockyer warned of a backlash from the entire state of Queensland and Folau himself.

He predicted Folau would get a thunderous reception from Maroons fans ready to vent their feelings on the Blues.

"If they go down this path (banning Folau) I'm sure the whole of Queensland will be angry," Lockyer said.

"It's us against them as it always is in Origin."

Lockyer predicted it would be a fired-up Folau waiting to take on the Blues.

"I think talk about him not being here will spur him on," he said.

"It's a bit like a second life. It will spur him on to prove a point and repay Queensland."

Folau seemed unfazed on Thursday as other team mates and former Queensland players also came to his defence.

"I don't really care at the moment, I'm just happy to be in the Queensland side," the big winger told the Ten network.

"We'll see what happens after this game."

Carr fears rugby league's multi-million dollar showpiece will be hijacked next month and turned into a "circus" by the AFL with Folau having already signed a four-year deal to play for and promote 2012 expansion side Greater Western Sydney.

Late on Thursday QRL managing director Ross Livermore said in a statement he was seeking legal opinion on the threats made by Carr.

"Unfortunately, Geoff holds two administrative positions which could affect his judgment on this issue," Livermore said, referring to Carr's role as CEO of both the ARL and NSWRL.

"As a layman, but knowing the Origin rules and the contents of the agreements signed by any NRL and State of Origin player, I am of the view that Geoff's proposal could have serious consequences both for the outcome of this year's State of Origin series and Israel personally.

"With these consequences in mind, we need to consider whether Geoff's threats are valid before worrying about the publicity being given to Israel's career next year with the AFL."

QRL chairman John McDonald said he'd be happy to debate the issue with the ARL if a meeting was convened.

"This is not about winning or losing or for one person, it's about what's best for the game of rugby league," he told AAP.

Meanwhile Lockyer was at least confident the shy, 21 year-old had not been distracted by all the fuss.

"He's keeping his head out of the papers, not letting anything distract his focus," Lockyer said.

Opposed initially to selecting Folau, Lockyer did not regret his change of heart after talking to other players.

"I think the players and team would have felt more uncomfortable had he not been in camp," said Lockyer.

"It would have been a really hollow feeling, like an elephant in the room.

"He's got his mates here. There's no issue there."

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