Holmes eager to make Origin fullback case

Ed Jackson
·2-min read

Queensland's Valentine Holmes desperately wants to prove his worth in the Maroons' No.1 jersey at Suncorp Stadium next week.

Holmes made his first appearance for his state at fullback in Wednesday's game two loss to NSW in Sydney, having played his previous five State of Origins on the wing.

But the 25-year-old struggled to make much of an impact as Queensland slumped to a 34-10 defeat, his first game since North Queensland's NRL season finale against Brisbane on September 24.

Holmes said that wait between matches as well as Cameron Munster's early exit from the game due to a head knock had contributed to his struggles.

"It didn't help losing Munster, I did a lot of work with him to bring me into the game," Holmes said.

"His confidence and what he brings to the team gets us going.

"We prepared all week for Munster and (Daly) Cherry-Evans to be in the halves and Hunt to come in as a lock, roving player, it threw a spanner in the works a bit.

"But it's a professional sport and we need to be prepared for that."

Wednesday's loss leaves next week's game at Suncorp Stadium as a winner-takes-all clash.

Holmes says a particular issue he and his teammates need to rectify next week is nullifying Nathan Cleary's kicking game after the Blues' halfback steered his team to victory in game two.

"The boys did a great job in the first game with kick pressure and putting him on the ground," Holmes said.

"He came out a lot better this week after a bit of criticism and we didn't really do what we did in game one.

"We need to be better. He is a key player, him and (James) Tedesco. We need to get them on the ground."