He may be an incumbent Kangaroo but Brisbane prop Josh McGuire is unsure whether he has done enough to impress loyal Queensland State of Origin selectors.
McGuire enjoyed a clear points decision in his head-to-head battle with Queensland prop Nate Myles in Brisbane’s 30-6 win over Manly last round in front of new Maroons coach Kevin Walters.
And he has already done enough this season to sway Walters’ Queensland predecessor, current Kangaroos coach Mal Meninga who gave him a bench nod for the trans-Tasman Test.
The stage is set for McGuire to stake another claim for a starting Maroons front row spot when he lines up against Queensland’s Matt Scott in Friday night’s NRL grand final re-match against the Cowboys.
But McGuire said he would not be taking anything for granted ahead of next week’s Queensland squad announcement thanks to the Maroons’ legendary loyalty.
“They are loyal but they have won nine of the last 10 years, I don’t see why they should change if it has been working,” McGuire said.
“Getting the Origin jersey is something that you grow up as a kid wanting to do – I would like to think I am a chance.”
Queensland are always faithful to their incumbent players – which has made McGuire decidedly nervous before their Origin I team announcement.
McGuire made his Origin debut last year, playing the first two games before disaster struck.
He suffered a ruptured Achilles in round 16 and cut a forlorn figure on the sidelines as Brisbane surged to the grand final only to lose to North Queensland in extra-time.
It also ensured he did not play in the Origin series decider at Suncorp Stadium – a record breaking 52-6 romp over NSW.
“It was pretty hard missing out on one of the greatest Queensland wins ever, a tough pill to swallow,” McGuire said.
“I had a taste last year and obviously want the opportunity again.
“I want to get in there and learn. Matt (Scott) and Nate (Myles) have been there the last decade and done the job.”
McGuire hopes to make up for lost time against the Cowboys, who also boast NSW prop James Tamou.
He believed the Cowboys clash set the stage for the “perfect Origin audition”.
“They have a great front row rotation, those two are at the top of the competition,” he said.