Player ratings: Who starred, who struggled in game three
QUEENSLAND prevented a Blues clean sweep and sent Billy Slater out a winner, in the final State of Origin clash for 2018.
Check out who starred and who struggled in Origin III at Suncorp Stadium.
Headache in his last Origin game whenever he loomed on either side of the ruck and his quick hands helped free his winger for Queensland's second try. Named man of the match.
Gambled and won with his second intercept try of the series and later made a diving catch for a second intercept when NSW raided with four minutes to go. Should have won over fans with all the hard metres made in the series.
Did the job defensively in his new centre position and competed his best on almost every play. Linked with Slater for one of the game's most brilliant forays.
Best game of the series but was unable to straighten the attack in key plays. Missed only two tackles.
His big workrate game spoiled by two errors in consecutive sets when NSW were vulnerable midway through the second half.
Rebounded maturely from the setback of his lofted intercept pass which conceded NSW's first try. Made the line break which put Queensland ahead with the decisive try and also made 23 tackles.
Brilliant game management in the first half with his short-kicking game, allied to Munster's, getting five first-half restarts. Backed up smartly for the winning try and enhanced his chances of an invitation back next year.
Kept motoring gamely despite absorbing a big hit by Paul Vaughan early.
Will wonder if he fits in Queensland's plans after playing only the first 31 minutes. Defended well, but ran once only
Delivered for his selectors in a new starting role with 75m from his first five runs and was as good as any prop on the field.
Very good in the last two games, making 125m from 18 carries and persisting with his lines run off Munster to provide the linking pass for Cherry-Evans's try.
Made a couple of key tackles in the second half when his side was rocking on the ropes and finished his first series with much credit.
Made a bad defensive read in NSW's second try but he and Cooper topped their side's tackle count with 31 apiece.
Came on after 31 minutes to play dummy-half. Made two ineffective short kicking options in the second half, but finishing on the winning side could see him be an Origin player next year.
More suited to this bench role, carting it for 80m from his first nine runs.
Much more vigorous than in previous two outings and a big hit-up laid the platform for Holmes's second try and he finished with 96m from 10 runs.
Has a 3-0 win-loss record in Origin and contributed 22 tackles and 53m here, making the case he should have been there in the first two games.
NEW SOUTH WALES
Prospective new Test fullback fought back well after his pass was intercepted for the first Queensland try, although held to 135 run metres.
Helped out his inside teammates by hauling in an 85m intercept try when his side was down to 12 men and made a game-high five tackle busts.
Not credited with a run in the first half, but delivered a big early tackle on Slater and kept the NSW left side tight. Missed the elusive Slater in the second Maroons try.
Credited with no line breaks for the series but did well in defence again and was one of the more dangerous Blues in the last 15 minutes.
Not overburdened with opportunities at the end of an impressive first series but made 150m from 14 touches.
For a questionable defender, he made two top tackles in the first half. Owed his team in the second half for his professional-foul sin bin, but could not give his tiring side structure. Did get a grubbered ball back into the field of play with 10 minutes to go.
Had trouble defending at times on Munster's side of the field. But was a handful in attack and will be back even better next year.
Fooled by Munster's footwork in the lead-up to Queensland's third try and must have created some sort of record for giving a penalty away for tripping when his side was 5m from the Maroons' line. But still made 107m.
Deserves to be Test hooker in October for a big workrate series and two more destructive moments from dummy-half in the first half before being quieter thereafter.
Defended well, making 23 tackles, but ran the ball once only.
Went into the game under a fitness cloud, making 91m and contributing 23 tackles.
One of the best in the series, making 28 tackles and carving out 68m.
Game-high 28 tackles to halftime and in plenty of those he hit to hurt. His ball skills gave NSW a point of difference in the ruck.
JACK DE BELIN
Busy again in defence and made 53 run metres from seven carries.
Announced himself by lining up a falling Oates and making big contact. Foolishly gave a penalty away by tackling a defender in his own half, but competed well.
Impressive debut series off the bench, but offloaded over the sideline at 12-all and Cherry-Evans scored from the next set.
Kept the ball alive well when he came on with 17 minutes, but his grubber on NSW's last set was ill advised.