Odds of Fittler in Origin III lengthen - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Odds of Fittler in Origin III lengthen

By Brent Read 20/06/2004 08:35:44 PM Comments (0)

The odds of Brad Fittler playing in the deciding State of Origin game lengthened when St George Illawarra five-eighth Trent Barrett came through the weekend unscathed and declared he would be ready for Origin III.

Barrett was among the Dragons' best in their 50-0 win over Wests Tigers at Oki Jubilee Stadium, although the entire St George Illawarra side was overshadowed by centre Mark Gasnier.

Gasnier, playing in front of NSW coach Phil Gould, raced in four tries to leap back into Origin contention - a month after being dropped from the side for his part in the Blues bonding scandal.

"It's an old cliche but to be honest, everyone would love to play Origin, but my main concern is the Dragons and if I'm having fun out there, I'm happy," Gasnier said.

"I wanted to get involved today which was a good sign. I guess things just went my way."

Prop Jason Ryles and centre Matt Cooper also produced solid outings today and are likely to come under consideration for the NSW side to play in Origin III at Telstra Stadium on July 7.

Ryles was willing while Cooper scored a try of his own.

"If they get through the next game fit they'd be fine," Dragons coach Nathan Brown said of Ryles and Barrett.

"You wouldn't expect Rylesy to play 50 or 60 minutes. He'd give you a good 35-40 minutes.

"Coops was 18th man and Gas was injured (for Origin II). I'm sure if either of them get picked they'd do a terrific job."

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