McKinnon praises Gagai after Origin win

Alex McKinnon has put aside State of Origin hostilities to praise good mate Dane Gagai after his sensational State of Origin debut in Queensland’s series-clinching win.

McKinnon’s former Newcastle teammate Gagai, 24, rose to the occasion on debut, amassing 104m in attack and crossing for the Maroons’ first try in their 52-6 game-three romp at Suncorp Stadium on Wednesday night.

Wearing an arm band with “Alex” written on it, Gagai bounced back from a nervous start to shine on the wing in Queensland’s eight-tries-to-one rout.

McKinnon made headlines before the match after his scathing criticism of Queensland skipper Cameron Smith’s on-field behaviour following the tackle last year that left the ex-Knights forward in a wheelchair.

However, McKinnon – once a fringe Blues player – only had love for Gagai after the match.

“I’m nsw through & through but I’m so proud & couldn’t be happier for my brother You deserve everything you get #razor,” McKinnon tweeted with a photo of Gagai celebrating his try.

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