"the Maroons stood up in the face of the fire and manufactured a sensational win over the Blues at Suncorp Stadium to lock the series at 1-1 last night"Origin alive, NSW critical - League - Sport - smh.com.au
What a day to be a Queenslander...
For those of you who may not be aware of the history behind the State of Origin series, it's essentially an annual competition between Queensland and New South Wales (the primary league states in Australia). We (Qld) have been thumped for the last few years and were looking down the barrel of another series defeat, but last night restored some pride in the Might Maroon faithful.
Last night, Qld hosted NSW at Suncorp Stadium - a stadium which was previously called Lang Park and commonly known as "The Cauldron" because of the steep seating surrounding the field. You really feel like you're sitting on the edge of your seat, hanging over the action unfolding beneath you - if you've been to Cardiff Arms in Wales then you get what I mean. The capacity is around 52000 and it was packed to the rafters last night with screaming Queenslanders. Unfortunately I was down here in Sydney and couldn't get to the game but managed to watch it from home... I spent 2 hours jumping on the couch like Tom Cruise during Oprah and screaming into the cushions so as to not rub it in too much for the neighbours.
The end result - a victory for Queensland to settle the series at 1-all and send it into a decider at the MCG on the 5th July. Amongst the non-believer cries of "rigged" so as to attempt to get better ratings, attendance etc, I still believe in the Qld v NSW fights of my youth (aka "the good old days"). The sort of battles which would entice young boys such as myself, my brothers and friends to don their imitation jerseys on rainy days and head over to the nearest muddy field to play a game of "touch" football which became progressively more and more physical as the day wore on.
These are the memories that come flooding back for me when State of Origin comes around every year - and I think I can safely suggest that it's the same for my brothers... last night was a flurry of sms messages between us as the Maroons systematically went about destroying NSW against all the odds.
(for a good ol' wikipedia background of the state of origin, go here)