Hasler praises Watmough's Origin mentality - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hasler praises Watmough's Origin mentality

Joe Barton and Steve Jancetic 31/05/2011 07:11:00 PM Comments (0)

Manly coach Des Hasler has endorsed backrower Anthony Watmough's State of Origin claims, but two other snubbed Blues are adamant they can't let themselves be drawn into the selection dogfight.

Hasler believes backrower Watmough's "Origin mentality" is exactly what NSW needs to take down Queensland, while Parramatta fullback Jarryd Hayne and St George Illawarra prop Michael Weyman also played major roles for NSW in the past three series.

It is believed Watmough's off-field troubles were a big reason behind his exclusion from game one, while Hayne's attitude was also questioned and Weyman's chances were hindered by a persistent groin complaint.

Hasler said on Tuesday that 27-year-old Watmough had cleaned up his act away from the field and it has resulted in his best form of the season.

"He's got the experience, he's played Origin before and he knows what it's about," Hasler said.

"He's got the Origin mentality so he certainly wouldn't look out of place in the Blues jersey.

"I just think he's been concentrating on his footy, as too has (Manly teammate) Glenn Stewart.

"There's enormous depth (in the backrow for NSW) so whether they go that way is up to the selectors but we know both players wouldn't let them down."

Coach Ricky Stuart denied Watmough had been blackbanned from the representative arena, and said he was well and truly under consideration for game two.

"Choc Watmough is always in calculations," Stuart told OneHD's One Week at a Time.

"I've got a good relationship with Choc. He's an outstanding football player and I know he's always performed well at rep football."

Hayne and Weyman will do battle on Friday night when the Eels host the table-topping Dragons, but neither is getting carried away with talk they could be rushed in to save the Blues from a sixth-straight series loss to the Maroons.

Hayne rocketed back onto Stuart's radar after Dragons winger Brett Morris's howler gifted Jharal Yow Yeh a crucial try in the 16-12 game one loss to Queensland.

Morris has since suffered a low-grade hamstring injury in the Dragons' victory over Wests Tigers on Sunday, which is likely to rule him out of Friday's clash while further enhancing Hayne's chances of a Blues recall.

While Weyman's name has hit the spotlight again following the lacklustre display from NSW's four props - who combined for less metres in game one (144m) than Queensland powerhouse Matt Scott provided on his own.

"I think it's on every New South Welshman's mind, you'd love to play for your state, to be part of it, but all I can do is play football," Weyman said.

"It's out of my hands whether I get picked or not ... I'd thoroughly cherish the opportunity."

Hayne was even more focused on Friday night, as the Eels look to bounce back from an 8-6 loss to Newcastle.

When asked if he was ready to step up for NSW if called upon, Hayne replied: "I'm ready to play for the Eels and we'll go from there".

"I know (there's no better team to prove yourself against than St George Illawarra), but I've just got to worry about the team and worry about what we're doing for the Eels," Hayne said.

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