The Kangaroos have put State of Origin animosity behind them in their quest for Four Nations glory.
Queensland’s win in this year’s interstate series ended in considerable animosity after NSW were accused of snubbing the Maroons victory ceremony.
There were fears that ill-feeling would carryover into the Australian camp for the Four Nations. But ahead of Saturday’s Test against New Zealand in Perth, veteran Australian and Queensland prop Matt Scott said that wasn’t the case.
“It is unbelievable to be honest,” Scott said.
“It probably has the best vibe of an Aussie team I have been part of.
“There has been no talk of Origin or anything like that everyone is getting on really well. There is a good mix of players.
“You will always see players that know each other really well naturally spent time together but there is certainly no division there.
“The vibe is really good. I can’t fault the attitude of everyone that has come into camp. We have all really embraced this change to the Kangaroos that Mal has brought about and I am really looking forward to the next five or six weeks.”
After Josh Papalii’s withdrawal due to an ankle injury on Thursday and Jake Trbojevic’s inclusion there are 13 Maroons players and 11 Blues players in former Queensland coach Mal Meninga’s squad.
There is a new dimension in the squad with eight Test rookies. Maroons and Kangaroos fullback Darius Boyd said that while the animosity of Origin was good for the game, it didn’t carry over into the Kangaroos squad.
“Every year there is always a bit of banter and a bit of fire during that Origin period and that is the way it should be. It makes for a great game and is why Origin is so special,” Boyd said.
“But when you all come in here, at the end of the day there are things on the field that happen but everyone is close mates.”