Maroons pack gets much-needed double boost

Murray Wenzel

Matt Scott has shrugged off fears of a serious knee injury, training on Monday in a massive boost for a Queensland State of Origin squad still full of uncertainties.

The North Queensland workhorse limped from the field in Saturday's last-minute loss to South Sydney with initial forecasts suggesting a one-to-three week lay-off.

But Scott, who missed all but two games last season with another knee injury, may be fit to play this Friday after forgoing scans on Monday.

The 22-game Origin veteran's availability is a massive relief for coach Kevin Walters, particularly in the wake of Cameron Smith's shock representative retirement last week.

And it is not the only piece of good news for the Maroons, with Brisbane forward Josh McGuire confident of overcoming an ankle injury to join him in the side on June 6.

The 28-year-old was Queensland's player of the series last year but was considered an unlikely starter in the MCG opener after injuring his ankle last month.

But McGuire is privately confident of proving his fitness after completing a torrid workout at the Broncos' Red Hill staircases on Monday.

Matt Scott avoided a serious injury. Pic: Getty

He is even a chance of lining up for the injury-hit Broncos on Thursday against Parramatta, but teammate Sam Thaiday said he deserved Queensland selection even without playing before the squad is announced early next week.

"He's trying (to prove his fitness)," Thaiday said of the fast-healing McGuire.

"We saw him out there running today. Josh is a fairly tough player, but something he does rely on is his footwork ... he needs that footwork to help him out.

"He's a great representative player now; he can get right in there and if need be slide into an Origin position without playing too much footy."

McGuire is one of five Broncos that could feature for Queensland, but none are certainties thanks to form and fitness.

Andrew McCullough is fighting with North Queensland's Jake Granville and Sydney's Jake Friend for the hooking spot vacated by Cameron Smith.

Corey Oates and Darius Boyd are in a tight race for a spot in Brisbane's backline, while Thaiday was dropped during last year's series but remains in the frame for a recall.

If none are picked it would mark the first time since 1997, when Super League players were unavailable for selection, that the Broncos didn't boast a Queensland representative.

"The Queensland teams are usually fairly easy to pick but there's definitely (going to be) a few smokies this year," Thaiday said of the unfamiliar air of uncertainty.

"I'm not going to hold my breath; I'm enjoying my footy at the moment.

"The role I'm playing has been a lot of fun and if I continue doing that, who knows what's going to happen."