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Maroons believed their own press: Smith

They may have made headlines for all the wrong reasons of late but Queensland captain Cameron Smith has blamed the all-conquering Maroons' State of Origin series-opening loss to NSW on believing their own press.
Maroons believed their own press: Smith
by AAP

By Laine Clark

COOLUM, Qld, June 24 AAP - They may have made headlines for all the wrong reasons of late but Queensland captain Cameron Smith has blamed the all-conquering Maroons' State of Origin series-opening loss to NSW on believing their own press.

However, Smith hopes it will be a different story in their must-win game two clash at Suncorp Stadium on Wednesday night thanks to some home truths delivered from coach Mal Meninga.

Usually keen to adopt the underdog tag, Queensland have not been able to avoid the spotlight after being ambushed 14-6 in Origin I in Sydney.

Forward Nate Myles has been accused of dirty tactics by NSW.

Meninga has come under fire for ditching the loyalty card and dumping two incumbents, sparking NSW talk that Queensland may be panicking ahead of Origin II.

And Meninga unwittingly became embroiled in an off-field incident when asked to leave a Brisbane hotel - hours after claiming he was fed up with the game's alcohol-fuelled controversies.

However, Smith conceded Queensland had been carried away by other newspaper talk after winning the last seven straight Origin series.

"You hear it from everyone, all the time. 'How good is this footy side? What about this backline?'," Smith said of Queensland's pre-series mindset.

"'It is probably going to be one of the greatest Queensland sides that have ever played the game'.

"It is only human nature for that to sit in the back of your mind so I guess in a way it (game one loss) is a reality check for the boys."

NSW ambushed a slow-starting Maroons to lead 14-0 in game one, a mistake Smith claimed a more grounded Queensland would not repeat on Wednesday night.

"It's human nature but game one everyone's attitude was that 'we are a great side, we've got some great players involved, let's get out there, dip the toe a bit and see how these blokes respond'," he said.

"To the Blues' credit they responded in the best way and gave it to us in the first 40 minutes.

"We are not going to go out there and test the waters again."

The game one loss stung - but not as much as Meninga's post-match assessment.

"He made it quite clear that he was disappointed with a few areas of our game in the first match (and) what we needed to change with our attitude," he said.

"That was probably his biggest disappointment - the way we started the match.

"He gave us a few reminders of who we are and what we are about.

"I think the boys responded well to that and it has shown in our sessions here (at Sunshine Coast team camp)."

Buying into their greatness may have brought them undone in game one - but Smith hinted it may be the key to bouncing back on Wednesday night.

Asked how they would respond in game two, Smith said: " I think it comes down to the fact that we have a great footy side and we are a team that responds when they need to respond.

"And we have been in this position a couple of times before."

Queensland came back from 1-0 down to claim both the 2006 and 2008 series.

And the Maroons have won every live rubber in Brisbane since 2005.




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