Andrew Fifita believes Wade Graham has a long State of Origin career ahead of him despite his probable omission from the NSW side for game three.
Cronulla’s Graham missed Origin II due to suspension. His replacement Tyson Frizell was one of the Blues’ best and is expected to be selected for the final game of the series in Sydney on July 13.
Graham’s Sharks teammate Fifita says the back-rower will get another shot.
“Wade knew what was going to happen if Friz got his chance and Friz proved himself really well,” Fifita said at Sharks training on Tuesday.
“But Wade is definitely a future player no matter what. He has Origin written all over him. He creates those second phase plays, he can kick, he is pretty much a halfback playing in the back row.
“Wade will get his chance and I guarantee you when he does he will deserve that jersey.”
Fifita said he doesn’t feel like a certain selection himself despite playing well for the Blues in both games this season.
“I haven’t played that back-to-back series,” he said.
“I played a series in 2013 and got one game last year so if I can complete a series and complete one next year I will feel like I belong in a Blues jersey.”
Fifita had praise for how his other Sharks teammate Jack Bird handled his Origin debut in the Blues series-losing defeat in Brisbane last Wednesday.
“Jack is a great utility player. He came on at lock and he ended up slipping into the halves and I thought he went really well,” Fifita said.
“I know he was a bit nervous before the game but I knew straight away he would handle it. He is young and he is cocky and he was ready for it.”