Eels poor form a downer for Hayne: Kearney - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eels poor form a downer for Hayne: Kearney

Ed Jackson 09/05/2011 05:27:55 PM Comments (0)

Parramatta's poor NRL form isn't doing Jarryd Hayne any favours as he attempts to keep his State of Origin spot, according to coach Steve Kearney.

The Eels sit 11th on the competition ladder with just three wins from eight matches and Hayne has struggled to impress, sitting out the last two NRL matches due to a suspension.

The 23-year-old, who has played 11 times for the Blues since 2007, is in a battle to retain the NSW No.1 jersey with Canberra youngster Josh Dugan.

Kearney said the Eels haven't been helpful to their superstar's cause but believes Hayne's pedigree should be enough to convince NSW coach Ricky Stuart to stick with him.

"I think sometimes, as Ricky would know, what they've done for their state in the past certainly counts them in good stead," Kearney told reporters on Monday.

"Unfortunately for Jarryd, we probably haven't been doing him any justice in the sense that we haven't been playing as well as we would have liked.

"Everybody knows what he's capable of and I'm sure he'll be given an opportunity there."

Hayne has been one of the few consistent performers at Origin level for NSW during Queensland's record run of five straight series victories.

And Kearney believes if it comes down to a coin toss between Hayne and Dugan for the fullback spot then his man should be given the nod.

"I think it helps if there's not too much between individuals going for the spot," Kearney, also the New Zealand coach, said of past performance influencing selection decisions.

"I think it counts for a lot. He's been there before, in that position, done it for them before - I think that helps."

For his part, Hayne said he was just focusing on helping the Eels get their campaign back on track and an Origin spot would take care of itself.

"I'm not worried about that (Origin) at the moment," said Hayne, who felt he put in a "solid" performance in Friday's City-Country match.

"I'm just worried about playing for Parra.

"We've been training extremely hard so it's about time we put it out on the field. That's something I guess we've been struggling with.

"It's obviously disappointing how we've been going but there's a lot of potential in the team and I guess it's just about everyone reaching that potential and playing for the full 80 minutes."

Hayne said he deserved his two-game ban for headbutting Canterbury's Corey Payne during a fiery match between the two sides last month.

The Eels take on North Queensland in Townsville on Saturday and Hayne was adamant he didn't think the Cowboys would try to get under his skin after his second headbutting incident within 12 months.

"Everyone makes mistakes and what I did, I put my hand up and say I overreacted and should have been the bigger man and not retaliated the way I did," Hayne said.

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