Blues Bench Aiming to Wreak Havoc
NSW bench forward Trent Merrin says the mobile and aggressive Blues bench has one simple task in Wednesday night's Origin series decider: wreak havoc.
Young giant David Klemmer has dominated the headlines for his wrecking-ball efforts in Origin II and last Monday's back-to-Belmore win over the Storm, but Roosters back-rower Boyd Cordner dished up some fierce hits and runs targeting Maroons playmaker Johnathan Thurston in Game Two while Merrin's late footwork and offloads caused headaches.
"I think [the job of the bench] is just to make an impact, make it known that you're out there and try and create as much havoc as you possibly can. I think the boys when we come on, I think we did that job," he said.
Creating problems for the Queenslanders is something the bench players have spoken about in the lead-up, he added.
"It's definitely something that you want to do, especially when you come off the bench you want to create that impact and like I said make it known that you're out there and cause as much havoc to the opposition as you can.
"It's something that we train to do and we talk amongst ourselves to make sure it happens."
Merrin said Origin II – in which he was brought on after 20 minutes due to a rib injury to Paul Gallen and played almost 40 minutes making an equal-high three offloads and two tackle breaks as well as 51 metres and 26 tackles – was one of his best performances in an interstate match.
"It was great to be able to create some second phase out there and get a few more minutes out there. I felt comfortable and it was something I'd love to do again."
He agreed the Blues' switch to a more attack-minded football style had suited him.
"It definitely did a job on Queensland and if we can produce something like that in Game Three, which is going to be difficult to do but if we can do something around the same it would be awesome."
Merrin isn't sure how many minutes he can expect in the decider but is hoping to improve further on his Game Two efforts.
"It depends on how the game pans out," he said.
"Hopefully I can improve on what I did in Game Two. I'm not too sure how the game's going to pan out but if it could be anything like Game Two it would be great."
The chance to go back-to-back after eight years of Origin heartache would mean so much to the young NSW side, according to Merrin.
"It would mean we're building that consistency as a group and that bond as a team. I could feel it happening and I've got all the confidence in the world that we can get the job done," he said.
This article first appeared on NRL.com