GI excited by potential of Oates partnership
ORIGIN'S greatest try scorer, Greg Inglis, says he is excited about his new left-side partnership with young rookie giant Corey Oates.
Inglis, who has been moved back to centre to allow Darius Boyd to fill Billy Slater's No.1 jumper, will link up with Oates who will make his Origin debut in Sydney on Wednesday night, hoping it is the start of a long career for the Maroons.
Oates took to the training field at Camp Maroon at Sanctuary Cove for Queensland's first session wearing a heart monitor, after experiencing a few irregular heartbeats playing against the Cowboys in Townsville last weekend.
However he quickly ditched the device following some lighthearted ribbing from his new teammates, including Inglis who hopes to lay on a try or two for the 21-year-old from Biloela at ANZ Stadium.
"He took it off, the boys were paying out on him," Inglis said with a laugh.
Inglis (17 tries) and Boyd (16 tries) have been part of Origin's most lethal left-side attack, but they have been split for Origin I, giving Oates his greatest moment after playing in last year's NRL grand final.
"He's a big unit, I didn't realise how big until we played them (Brisbane) earlier this year," said Inglis, who revels on rugby league's biggest stage under the atmosphere Origin generates.
"He is an Origin debutant and I am looking forward to the excitement he will bring. I'll spend the week with him. He is a very exciting talent.
"If the opportunity comes, I would love to put him over for his first try. If it's not me, hopefully it will be someone else. There's nothing like scoring a try for Queensland."
Inglis is an Origin phenomenon.
When he pulls on the Maroon jumper he feels empowered to give every last breath to his state.
"Origin brings out mental toughness and character in a lot of players," said Inglis when asked why he plays so well around Origin time.
"Origin is one of the greatest spectacles and biggest games you can play.
"It's what is inside of you and just finding it. It tests your character and it tests you like nothing else as a player."
Meanwhile, Queensland five-eighth Johnathan Thurston continues to receive treatment for a corked hip.
He took part in some of the side's 90-minute training session and is in no danger of missing his 34th straight Origin game.
Slater, who is recovering from shoulder surgery, made a surprise appearance at training, taking the field to run a few ball drills with the Queensland players.