Every year around State of Origin time, the buzz surrounding the annual rugby league clash of state versus state is the only thing anyone is talking about. It's almost considered un-Australian not take an interest or pick a winning side. Our beginners guide will hopefully demystify what all the hype and give you enough knowledge to pick the team you'll be cheering on from the couch.
Rugby league (NRL) has always been most popular in New South Wales and Queensland, and for that reason alone, once a year the two states go head to head to decide who is the ultimate champion. It's like the Grand Final only this is the grand-daddy of all events. Only the best of the best are selected to represent their state. Players must be eligible to play league at international level and play for the home state of the first senior league team they were registered with.
The New South Wales team is also known as the Blues (the colour of their league jerseys) or the cockroaches, while the Queensland team are also referred to as the Maroons or the cane toads.
The best out of three wins. The Maroons are tipped as the favourites to win the first game on home soil. New South Wales are expected to be the underdogs, but The Blues won't go down without a fight.
2017 State of Origin Venues /Times
Game 1: 31st May 2017 Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane, QLD, Australia, Kick-off 8.15pm local time
Game 2: 21st June 2017 ANZ Stadium, Sydney, NSW, Australia, Kick-off 8.15pm local time
Game 3: 12th July 2017 Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane, QLD, Australia. If the series ends up being a draw after game 2, the decider will be bigger than Ben Hur.
All games will be broadcast on channel 9, if you don't have tickets to watch it live.