Qld look to end Sydney hoodoo

Nine State of Origin series wins in the last decade is impressive.

But there is one stat that clearly irks the all conquering Queensland ahead of the June 1 series opener against NSW – their record in Sydney.

And it seems new Maroons coach Kevin Walters has made it his first order of business after taking over the reins from the legendary Mal Meninga.

Time and again Walters brought up Queensland’s 2-4 win-loss Origin record over the past five years in Sydney unprompted after unveiling his first 17 for the series opener at ANZ Stadium.

And with two games in Sydney this year – the first time since 2013 – Walters admitted it was a hoodoo they must finally overcome.

“Since they started a three game series in 1983 it’s been difficult (to win in Sydney),” Walters said.

“But with this team we are going to give it a real good shake.

“We have put all of our energy leading into that first game.”

During their stunning Origin run since 2006, Queensland have a 7-6 win-loss record in Sydney.

However, it has been reduced to a worrying 2-4 tally since 2011.

Overall the Blues have a dominant 24-1-17 win-draw-loss Origin record in the NSW capital.

“It’s a real challenge for our guys,” Walters said.

“We need to square the ledger a bit there if we can – that’s what we will try to do.”

Queensland coach Cameron Smith said they spent time on the very first day of their team camp on Tuesday discussing the one thing they haven’t quite got right during their 10-year dominance.

“We know they (NSW) are a great side and they’re particularly hard to beat in Sydney,” Smith said.

“We haven’t got such a great record there, that is for everyone to see, but we are out to change that this year.

“I don’t think the record eats away a whole heap given the overall record we have had the last 10 years.

“I would take a series win over a win in Sydney any day of the week.

“But it’s an area we haven’t been so good at – winning in Sydney.”

Smith said their Sydney record compounded the importance of drawing first blood in game one at ANZ Stadium next Wednesday night.

“It is a tough place to play, it is a very hostile crowd to play in front of and conditions are quite different than Brisbane,” Smith said.

“We’ve spoken about it briefly (in team camp) – we all know game one is pretty important to base your series around.”

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