Another State of Origin camp, another injury drama for Queensland.
Maroons coach Kevin Walters admits there is no guarantee Dane Gagai will be fit for next week’s Origin II clash in Brisbane after drafting North Queensland winger Kyle Feldt into camp as cover.
Weeks after dealing with Cooper Cronk’s rolled ankle drama ahead of Origin I, Walters is now sweating on Gagai after the Newcastle flyer arrived at their game two camp with a quad strain.
Gagai didn’t waste time hitting the pool for treatment with Maroons medical staff soon after the team arrived at their Gold Coast camp on Wednesday.
Walters said Gagai was not expected to start training with Queensland until at least Saturday – four days ahead of Origin II at Suncorp Stadium.
“Dane’s got a bit of a leg issue,” Walters told Fox Sports TV.
“We are not 100 per cent sure whether he will be playing yet.
“We’ve got Kyle in on standby to train with the side and get an idea of what happens during Origin.”
Feldt, 24, was left devastated after all but guaranteeing an Origin debut ahead of Origin I, only to be overlooked after a butter-fingered first-half display for the Cowboys against Brisbane in round 11.
But Walters kept the door open for Feldt to finally realise his Origin dream.
The winger would be a perfect fit on Queensland’s right edge with Cowboys teammate Justin O’Neill.
“There’s no doubt he is a future prospect for the Maroons,” Walters said of Feldt.
“Up north, they tell me he has come a long way, so this will be a good opportunity to come in and see how the Origin boys prepare.”
Cowboys flyer Feldt will no doubt be peppered by high balls at Queensland training if he looks set to replace Gagai.
Feldt made three decisive handling errors in 15 minutes in the fateful round-11 clash that dashed his Origin hopes – for now.
But he also possesses a valuable kicking game of his own in what would sound alarm bells for NSW rookie fullback Matt Moylan.
In the meantime, Feldt is simply getting his head around joining his Queensland heroes in camp.
He arrived on Wednesday night and will take part in the Maroons’ first training session on Thursday.
“I am just happy to have my name tossed up,” Feldt told Cowboys TV.
“It’s great to be recognised for my form this year.
“I will use this week as a learning curve and try to get as much out of it as I can.
“I was looking forward to a week off (with Cowboys’ NRL bye), but this is much better.”