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How Souths star responded to QLD snub; Freddy’s contingency plan revealed: Origin Talking Pts

State of Origin coaches Brad Fittler and Billy Slater made some shock decisions regarding the selection of players in the lead-up to the series ' opener next week.

From Josh Addo-Carr's decision to snub his name, to his snub, to the Jack Wighton vs Stephen Crichton debate, and Ben Hunt's nod to No.9 to Harry Grant, the pair were on NRL 360 to dissect all the major talk points.

Fittler spoke out about the "one of the tougher decisions" the actor has ever taken.

In the meantime, a candid Slater has confirmed Hunt will begin at 9 and also revealed that they've been in contact in contact with Wayne Bennett.

The biggest surprise that result from the Origin team choices is the decision to not include the incumbent Blues Josh Addo-Carr as the winger.

NSW Coach Brad Fittler has indicated that the decision was based on the club's performance, and there is a feeling that Addo-Carr is paying the cost of joining an unprofitable club.

In an interview with NRL 360, Fittler explained his decision to select the team and said that it is "one of the tougher decisions" the player has ever made.

"Daniel Tupou had played so well and just at the moment what's happening with Josh and his footy at the Dogs I just felt it was better for the team that we brought someone in that's in a team that's playing really well and a player that is in form," the player stated.

"Not only has he played an integral part of our work on the field, but also he's been a major part of our work off the field. He's got a lot of enthusiasm, which made this one of the most difficult decisions I've taken."

"We have just discussed how whether he should be at the right track and that he should leave and work his way back to the team. He was in agreement," Fittler added when asking about the phone call to Addo Carr.

News Corp journalist Paul Kent suggested that Addo-Carr wasn't considered for Tupou as Fittler was looking for tall wingers who could take on Queensland's Xavier Coates and Selwyn Cobbo. He also posed the question of the reason why, in this case, Brian To'o kept his position.

"It surprised everybody... the think that didn't quite make sense to me is we heard why Addo-Carr might have missed out is because they feared the aerial assault of the tall Queensland wingers," Kent explained.

"Well you're on the opposite side NSW have one of the slimmest players in the league in Brian To'o.

"We know what he brings, getting yardage early in the sets of six but if that's the reason for Addo-Carr not to be there, who has got blistering pace, who is a super finisher, I think it's definitely a surprise."

In the meantime, Braith Anasta believes "playing at Canterbury has impacted his selection," as Phil Rothfield said Addo-Carr is "the fact of not going to weaker clubs."

Rothfield was able to explain the way in which Addo-Carr's transfer from the top premiership team The Storm and then to an underperforming team with the Bulldogs has cost the club 45,000 dollars in State of Origin match payments.

"This Josh Addo-Carr missing out is an indication of his decision to go to Canterbury and get out of a great system at the Storm," Rothfield declared.

"They're playing at $15,000 per game. That's why it's cost the player $45,000 right now. But you're also taking the risk with lower clubs by being unable to play rep football.

"Even though he has been playing in a struggling side, he hasn't been the player in previous seasons because he's not getting the football like he used to."

The idea of NSW selecting their wingers on the basis of the threat of an aerial assault from Queensland was suggested to Maroons Coach Billy Slater.

While Slater did not deny the plot but he emphasized that it's not the main focus of his team.


"That's just a part of the game, that's just something everyone tries to do -- they try to finish their sets in really good positions," Sater stated to NRL 360.

"We will not be stepping out of our buildings to attempt to eliminate anyone, but it's an aspect of playing.

"Those two guys bring those strengths in the air but at the end of the day we need a collective performance from all our team."

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