Queensland star's telling revelation about David Fifita after brutal snub for State of Origin

Tino Fa'asuamaleaui believes it is a matter of time until David Fifita is recalled to the Maroons squad.

Injured Maroons forward Tino Fa'asuamaleaui believes it is a matter of time until his Titans teammate David Fifita is recalled into the Queensland Origin side. The Titans back-rower has fallen well down Billy Slater's pecking order despite playing in all three Origin games in last year's 2-1 series win.

After shocking the NRL world by dropping Fifita for Game 1, Slater said: "I've got no doubt that Dave will get back to the footy he played last year, and I'm sure he will wear a Maroons jersey in the future again. Dave created a really high standard for his footy last year. He just hasn’t quite got to that standard this year."

And on the weekend Fifita showed Slater what he was missing as he wreaked havoc in a dominant display in Gold Coast's 66-6 win over a woeful Warriors outfit. The 24-year-old ran for 195m and had 10 tackle breaks in a dominant display but Fifita still finds himself on the outer with Slater.

Pictured left David Fifita and right with Tino Fa'asuamaleaui
Tino Fa'asuamaleaui believes it is a matter of time until David Fifita is recalled to the Maroons squad. Image: Getty

Competition for spots in the Maroons back-row is fierce, with North Queensland's Jeremiah Nanai and St George Illawarra enforcer Jaydn Su'A both handed starting roles for Game 2. On the bench are two more back-rowers, with versatile Warriors forward Kurt Capewell and Dolphins veteran Felise Kaufusi. While Trent Loiero and Heilum Luki were named as reserves and both seemingly ahead of Fifita in the pecking order

But Fa'asuamaleaui - who is sidelined with a ruptured ACL after playing 12 consecutive games for the Maroons - says he believes Fifita will come back into Origin calculations as soon as Game 3. "Billy won't rule him out," Fa'asuamaleaui said.

"He knows what he is capable of. He was a bit unlucky being injured last week, but Dave will keep fighting for the Titans and playing good. He will do his thing. Dave is the type of person who will work hard, and I am hoping to see him in a Maroons jersey again. I hope to get mine back too. I am still a long way off, but Dave has just got to keep chipping away at it and doing what he is for the Titans and he will be right."

GOLD COAST, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 22: David Fifita of the Titans runs the ball during the round 16 NRL match between Gold Coast Titans and New Zealand Warriors at Cbus Super Stadium, on June 22, 2024, in Gold Coast, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)
David Fifita wreaked havoc in a dominant display in the Titans' 66-6 win over a woeful Warriors unit.

Fifita's axing for this year's Origin series came days after the 24-year-old backflipped on his decision to leave the Titans at the end of the year. The Gold Coast forward was heavily criticised for going back on his agreement with the Roosters after having reportedly agreed to a four-year deal worth around $3.3million.

And Fifita's last-minute change of heart has been likened to that of Manly halfback Daly Cherry-Evans' famous Titans backflip. Following his decision to stay at the Sea Eagles, he was booed by NRL fans up north and was even labelled a "filthy cockroach" in a back page story by The Gold Coast Bulletin. And after staying loyal to Manly he was exiled from the Queensland team at State of Origin level.

Despite delivering at NRL level, Cherry-Evans spent three years out of the Maroons fold before finally being recalled for Game 3 of the 2018 series. And Blues legend Laurie Daley believes a similar thing is now happening with Fifita. "I’m shocked David Fifita isn’t there. He played all three games last year," Sky Sports radio host Gerard Middleton said last month after his snubbing for Game 1. "Conspiracy theory. The backflip. How that’s viewed externally? Whether they think that’s the right mindset."


Daley replied: "And he was great last year too. Didn’t Daly Cherry-Evans, when he made that decision to backflip too, didn’t he get left out of that Queensland side?"

"I’m pretty sure around that time, he might have been exiled," he continued. "That might be part of it. I’m not sure. But yesterday’s performance from Fifita was damaging, the amount of work that he got through. I must say, if I’m NSW I’m happy he’s not in that squad."

with AAP