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Hunt firms for Qld Origin debut

The odds on Ben Hunt making his State of Origin debut in Queensland's must-win game two clash have shortened after injured halfback Daly Cherry-Evans sat out Sunday's opposed training session.
Hunt firms for Qld Origin debut
by AAP

By Laine Clark

GOLD COAST, Qld, June 15 AAP - The odds on Ben Hunt making his State of Origin debut in Queensland's must-win game two clash have shortened after injured halfback Daly Cherry-Evans sat out Sunday's opposed training session.

The good news for the Maroons was that fellow backline stars Greg Inglis (ankle) and Billy Slater (shoulder) came through the session on the Gold Coast with flying colours while the make-up of their interchange bench also became clearer.

Cherry-Evans will be given until the last minute to prove his fitness and was to travel with the squad to Sydney later on Sunday ahead of the Origin II battle with NSW at ANZ Stadium on Wednesday night.

However, he is yet to take part in a team training session after again being sidelined on Sunday.

He watched the majority of the opposed session against the Queensland Under-18 side with ice on his troublesome knee.

He only joined his teammates for a group huddle with coach Mal Meninga during breaks.

Fellow backline stars Inglis ran freely and Slater was untroubled.

There was speculation that Inglis may be switched to pivot and incumbent five-eighth Johnathan Thurston to halfback for game two to counter Cherry-Evans' possible omission.

But Brisbane No.7 Hunt was the only player used at halfback during Sunday's training session.

An Origin II nod for Hunt would cap a remarkable transformation for the Brisbane playmaker.

He has only played 13 games as Brisbane's first-choice halfback this year after biding his time on the NRL club's bench.




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