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Buderus's Origin chances not affected

Country coach and NSW assistant Laurie Daley does not believe hooker Danny Buderus has hurt his chances of earning a State of Origin recall by withdrawing from Sunday's City-Country rugby league clash.
Buderus's Origin chances not affected
by NRL

By Joe Barton

SYDNEY, April 16 AAP - Country coach and NSW assistant Laurie Daley does not believe hooker Danny Buderus has hurt his chances of earning a State of Origin recall by withdrawing from Sunday's City-Country rugby league clash.

Buderus ruled himself out of the annual representative fixture on Monday, citing an Achilles injury.

That raised eyebrows after the Newcastle veteran's club coach, Wayne Bennett, had embarked on a two-week campaign urging selectors to rest him from the clash.

Bennett had argued a rest would give him a better chance of representing NSW and that he had nothing to prove by playing in the traditional selection trial.

But the 34-year-old, who is believed to be in Adelaide while the Knights have the bye, was picked on Sunday.

He told Daley on Monday that he had been carrying an injury that would prevent him from training until two days before the match.

Daley was satisfied and said it should not affect his chances of adding to his 21 NSW appearances.

"I think he's been playing a good brand of football. He's suited to State of Origin," Daley told reporters on Monday.

"I know that Ricky has been very impressed with the way he's been performing."

Daley also refused to accept Bennett's claim that Buderus, a five-time Country representative, didn't want to play on Sunday.

"No, he wanted to be a part of it and he made that point clear to me when I spoke to him," Daley said.

"But he did say that he's had an ongoing issue with his Achilles tendon and he felt it was within his best interests to rest it.

"He's been a great servant and didn't want to let Country down and he just indicated he wouldn't be able to do a lot of running and wouldn't be able to run until Friday or Saturday."

In his absence, Gold Coast lock Greg Bird will captain the side - with the new skipper admitting he was disappointed to find out he would not be playing with Buderus this weekend.

"I was under the assumption that Bedsy was going to play, but it's not to be and I'm very proud to have the job of captaincy," Bird told AAP.

"I'm disappointed for the team, but I'm not disappointed in him. It's his decision. If his body isn't up to it, his body isn't up to it.

"He's done everything in rugby league to have shown his wares and proved himself at rep level. I don't think he's got anything else to prove."

Melbourne utility forward Ryan Hinchcliffe moves from the bench to take on the hooking role, with Canberra half Josh McCrone joining a five-man bench.




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