Refs must act on Origin foul play: Fittler
NSW coach Brad Fittler wants the referees to be vigilant for any more late shots from chastened, desperate Queensland in Wednesday's State of Origin series decider.
Fittler was seething over a high tackle on Blues star James Maloney in game two that resulted in a one-game ban for Maroons firebrand Josh McGuire.
It was one of a number of late hits dished out by an outplayed Queensland during their heavy defeat in Perth, including one that forced skipper Boyd Cordner to undergo a first-half concussion test.
Fullback James Tedesco was another who was taken out off the ball.
"I just hope the referees will look after that sort of behaviour," Fittler said ahead of the winner-takes-all game three at ANZ Stadium.
"I didn't really see the (Maloney) tackle until later and (McGuire) got suspended so obviously it needed a penalty.
"You just hope the refs are on top of that sort of stuff."
Three days after Origin II, the NRL instructed its officials to clamp down on crusher tacklers and late shots.
Fittler stopped short of instructing his big men to retaliate should Queensland be guilty of more illegal play at ANZ Stadium.
"I tell (the team) nothing. No, they just go out and play," Fittler said.
"The game's got rules and as long as the referees obviously ref within the rules, then players won't be able to defend like that."
Cordner was furious at having to come from the field in game two, however he has urged his teammates to exercise caution when emotions run high with so much at stake in the decider.
The early exchanges in particular could be extra fiery after Maroons coach Kevin Walters sprayed his team for some soft contact in game two.
Cordner is confident his big men will be up for the physical battle.
"But at the same time, we've got to keep our discipline in check," he said.
"In Origin, you don't get too many opportunities. We don't want to be giving cheap ball away.
"Look, we'll be okay. They can do what they want to do.
"We're fully aware of what we need to do to get the win."
Blues rookie Dale Finucane said it was up to the forwards to protect their playmakers, whether it was at club or Origin level.
"It's actually something that I didn't see in the game or haven't looked back and reviewed, so it's hard for me to make comments on that," Finucane said.
"But definitely there's an onus on the forwards to protect their halves and make sure they're being looked after."
After breaking camp on Friday to enjoy the weekend with their families, the Blues were put through a two-and-a-half hour weights and field session at NSWRL HQ on Monday.
© AAP 2019