Queensland clinch another State of Origin series

Queensland won the 2023 State of Origin series with a dominant victory over New South Wales at a buzzing Suncorp.

Val Holmes and Murray Taulagi tries built a healthy 10-0 half-time advantage for Queensland despite them ceding plenty of possession.

Holmes' second came after the break and Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow asserted the Maroons' dominance with a fourth try.

Damien Cook scored for the Blues before Xavier Coates and Jeremiah Nanai tries ensured a blow-out scoreline.

The game spilled over into chaos at the end as Josh Addo-Carr was sin-binned for a punch with 20 seconds remaining, while Jarome Luai and Reece Walsh were sent off for exchanging headbutts.

Legendary former Australia international Billy Slater has taken his success as a Maroons player into coaching, winning back-to-back series with his home state for the first time since 2017 and moulding a collective of young, hungry players into a formidable outfit in the process.

His selection of Broncos full-back Walsh for the custodian role, with Samoa's Dolphins full-back Tabuai-Fidow in the centre, paid off brilliantly with both heavily involved in defence and attack.

The experienced halves duo of Daly Cherry-Evans and Cameron Munster provided the control and creativity to unpick the Blues, despite giving away plenty of ball.

Holmes' first was from a Cherry-Evans dink which Addo-Carr could not field while Munster's chip caused chaos for Nanai to settle it.

The Blues' left-edge defence was targeted all night, with points also coming courtesy of razor-sharp hands for Holmes' second and Taulagi's score.

Tabuai-Fidow beat Blues prop Payne Haas to a wicked bounce for his score, as the Maroons took their chances.

Brad Fittler's future as New South Wales head coach could be in question after this loss, despite winning three of the past six series.

His side did not struggle for possession but a combination of stubborn defence and a lack of invention around the Queensland goal-line cost them.

Mitchell Moses was picked at half-back with Nathan Cleary out, and he showed some nice touches but the early loss of Tom Trbojevic at centre through a pectoral injury proved key.

Try-scorer Cook did his best in an unfamiliar position, but the absence of a key strike player showed at times with some clunky attack on that edge.

The onus now for the wounded Blues is to avoid a clean sweep on home turf when game three goes to Sydney on Wednesday, 12 July.

Queensland: Walsh; Coates, Holmes, Tabuai-Fidow, Taulagi; Munster, Cherry-Evans; Flegler, Hunt, Fa'asuamaleaui, Fifita, Cotter, Carrigan

Interchanges: Grant, Flegler, Nanai, Fotuaika

New South Wales: Tedesco; To'o, Crichton, Trbojevic, Addo-Carr; Luai, Moses; Paulo, Robson, Haas, Frizell, Young, Yeo

Interchanges: Utoikamanu, Murray, Martin, Cook

Referee: Ashley Klein