Bellamy pays tribute to Gidley - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bellamy pays tribute to Gidley

By David Beniuk 28/06/2010 09:38:19 PM Comments (0)

Coach Craig Bellamy has paid a heartfelt tribute to dumped NSW captain Kurt Gidley, describing him as a "dead set Origin player".

Gidley, the first Blues skipper to do the job from the bench in State of Origin II, lost the captaincy to veteran five-eighth Trent Barrett on Monday night when the team was named for game three.

Thirty-two-year-old Barrett will almost certainly play his last Origin game on July 7 at ANZ Stadium.

Gidley will again be on the bench after serving as skipper in five of the eight games Bellamy has been at the helm.

"The one thing I will say about Kurt (is) since I've been coaching Origin, and especially last year's series when he was captain, he's done an outstanding job," Bellamy said.

"He's done an outstanding job in sometimes difficult circumstances, he's a dead set Origin player.

"He competes on every play, he's got a great passion to be playing for NSW and I just think he did a tremendous job the last two years.

"Baz (Barrett) will do a tremendous job as well but I really feel for Kurt and I know he'll be determined to go out there and play well and do all he can for the team."

Asked about the decision to give the job to the Cronulla skipper, NSWRL chairman Colin Love answered for Bellamy.

"Trent's a great bloke, he's a great player but, not only a great player, he's a great team player," he said.

"We tried something in Origin II and we decided for Origin III that we were best served having the captain on the field and in the run-on side."

Bellamy added: "At the end of the day that wasn't my decision, it was the board's decision to do that and I support the board."

The Melbourne coach, who has had the misfortune of being NSW boss during an era of one of the great Queensland teams, said he wouldn't approach what is likely to be his last Origin any differently.

"I'm approaching it as an Origin game," he said.

"I know it's the third Origin game and we can't win the series but all Origin games are important and that's all I'm concentrating on this week and then we'll worry about the other stuff after."

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