Stat king Tolman wants Origin jersey - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Stat king Tolman wants Origin jersey

Ben Horne 28/04/2011 07:26:57 PM Comments (0)

His coach and Canterbury team-mates claim he should be a certainty, and Bulldogs front rower Aiden Tolman has declared he's ready for State of Origin football.

While bolter Trent Merrin has been grabbing all the headlines of late, Tolman has every right to ask representative selectors, 'what about me?'

"Definitely, I think I'm ready for it," Tolman says.

The 22 year-old's work rate in the NRL has been phenomenal in 2011, and NSW coach Ricky Stuart must surely have his sights on the man who tops virtually every front rower's stat that matters.

Tolman is the only prop in the game to have run over 1000 metres and averaged over 150 metres per match this season.

He also leads the league for total runs, average runs and tackles - with an astonishing 246 racked up already.

The Smithtown junior is only fractionally behind Luke Bailey for most minutes and average minutes by a bookend this season, and he's not doing too badly on the offload count either.

He'll look to add to all that against ladder-leading Brisbane's feared pack on Friday night at Suncorp.

Canterbury coach Kevin Moore predicts Tolman has a long Origin career ahead of him, and says it should start in game one of this series.

"It depends on what Ricky and the selectors are looking for but if they came to me and asked my opinion I'd certainly recommend him," Moore told AAP.

"I've got no doubt anyone who has watched our games would have seen the input, his work rate, his work on the ball his work off the ball, his carries, his metreage, everything he's doing suggests he's going to be at that level and when he does break into that I think he'll be there for a long time.

"He's got one of the best attitudes I've ever seen."

Tolman and Merrin both weigh 104kg and are almost the same height - neither big front rowers by any stretch.

However, Queensland's leading props Matt Scott, Petero Civoniceva and David Shillington are massive men, and the Blues will need to decide what mix they want between size players like Kade Snowden and Tom Learoyd-Lahrs, and energy options like Tolman and Merrin.

There might not be room for both of them, but Bulldogs team-mate Michael Ennis says he'd be surprised if Tolman was overlooked and is adamant size won't be an issue.

"His form this year has been as good as any prop in the comp and if the sides are being picked on form I've got no doubt his name will be there," he said.

"Origin is a game of commitment and how much you want it and how much you want to win and he's certainly got all those factors. He plays above his weight every week.

"He's one of those guys you treasure playing alongside."

Tolman, who has gone to another level since joining the Bulldogs from Craig Bellamy and Melbourne in 2011, says the height and weight he gives away to the Maroons props won't be a factor.

"The coaches I've had have tried to play towards my strengths, and they know what they are," he said.

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2021 AAP

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