Thurston gets Meninga's guarantee

Mal Meninga.
Mal Meninga. Tony Martin

THE battle to play halfback for Queensland this season is far from settled, Maroons rugby league coach Mal Meninga has revealed.

Meninga said yesterday that it was down to a four-way stoush between Melbourne's Cooper Cronk, Manly and former Sunshine Coast rookie Daly Cherry-Evans, Parramatta's Chris Sandow and the Gold Coast's Scott Prince.

>> Latest sport news

"I've promised Cooper first crack and that's what will happen," Meninga, who was addressing a Former Origin Greats breakfast at the Crowne Plaza Pelican Waters, said.

Meninga insisted players did not own positions.

"Origin is too important for that," he said.

"They all know and understand that."

It was a different matter, however, for North Queensland Cowboys co-captain Johnathon Thurston - the man who would take the place of Broncos great Darren Lockyer.

Lockyer, the Australian captain, retired at the end of last season.

Meninga said he thought Thurston was a better five-eighth than halfback.

It was a big call. As a halfback, Thurston has been among the best players in the world for several seasons.

"He'll have a bit more space out wider," Meninga said.

"Johnathon played a lot of his early football at five-eighth, right up until he went to the Cowboys."

Meninga said he was looking forward to the State of Origin, but admitted he hoped the exchanges off the field between Queensland and NSW would not be as vitriolic this year.

Queensland will be aiming to score a seventh straight series win.

Meninga, who played with NSW coach Ricky Stewart at the Canberra Raiders, said he still counted Stewart among his good mates.

"We still talk ... just not as much during Origin," he said.

And Meninga's tip for the premiership?

"I still think Manly is strong, and after the off-season they've had, they will have something to prove," he said.

"Wests Tigers has a good roster, too."

Topics:  mal meninga, maroons, state of origin



Local Real Estate

finda logo
Featured Real Estate
Stunning Ocean View... Interest over...
House 4 3 4
MUST BE SOLD !! All Offers...
House 4 2 2
Luxury Apartment with... Offers Over $1.4...
Apartment 3 2 2
Large and modern within... Forthcoming...
House 5 3 2

Featured Jobs

finda logo

Logan jobs listed daily





Local Partners

Local Profile

Stay Connected

You can change the newsletters you are subscribed to when you edit your profile

Edit Profile


Horoscopes

Libra

You could be invited somewhere that you find very uncomfortable. You'll remain polite, but you will not enjoy the experience. Demands at...

read more

Marketplace

Special Offers & Promotions

Compare & Save