Cameron Munster was in inspired form as the Queensland Maroons defeated the New South Wales Blues 20-14 to clinch State of Origin glory in Wednesday’s game-three decider.
A full capacity crowd at Suncorp Stadium, the largest globally since the COVID-19 pandemic put restrictions on supporters worldwide, witnessed Queensland end the Blues’ hopes of a three-peat.
Playmaker Munster and debutant Harry Grant particularly impressed for a Maroons side who have now won seven of the last eight Origin games at Suncorp including the past three.
Valentine Holmes, who moved to the wing for the decider, scored first after three minutes with a leaping finish in the left corner following a well-worked Queensland move.
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A mistake from Corey Allan allowed James Tedesco to quickly level but the Blues were dealt a blow when their captain and try scorer left the field with an injury.
Queensland dominated the rest of the half but it took until the stroke of half-time to engineer a 12-6 lead when Munster’s kick was finished by Edrick Lee.
Holmes squandered a couple of try-scoring opportunities as the Blues kept the scoreline in check, but he added a penalty before Grant marked a fine bow by going over.
In a frantic finish, Daniel Tupou’s try kept NSW in the match before Allan’s sin-binning for a professional foul on Josh Addo-Carr invited late Blues pressure, which the Maroons held firm against to earn coach Wayne Bennett a series win 17 years on from his last spell in charge.