Bird back in Blue ahead of Origin game two

GOLD Coast co-captain Greg Bird has been welcomed back into the NSW State of Origin side, following his suspension.

The Titans enforcer had to sit out Game One but was yesterday named by Blues coach Laurie Daley in the backrow.

Josh Dugan and Will Hopoate will replace the injured Morris twins – at right centre and right wing respectively.


ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER THIS ADVERTISEMENT


Bird has tipped Dugan to be the key to helping finally end Queensland’s interstate dominance.

Dugan scored a hat-trick for St George Illawarra against Cronulla on the weekend, and Bird has labeled him “NSW’s X-factor”.

The second State of Origin match will be held at ANZ Stadium on June 18, and a win to NSW would see them claim an unbeatable 2-0 lead and finally end Queensland’s eight-year winning streak.

The Maroons are dealing with some serious injury concerns, with the final make up of the team not expected to be known until just before game day.

Yesterday, injured trio Greg Inglis, Billy Slater and Daly Cherry-Evans all stayed back at the Sanctuary Cove camp while the rest of the squad headed to Longreach for a fan day.