Blake Ferguson was one of the standouts for the Brydens Lawyers NSW Blues last year and despite a somewhat quiet season in 2020, True Blue Steve ‘Blocker’ Roach believes he is still in contention for an Origin jumper this year.
The Eels winger has made nine appearances in the sky blue jersey in his career and was a key player in State of Origin games two and three last year.
In 2019, Ferguson scored ten tries but he has struggled to get over the line this season. He scored his first try in Round 17 and backing that up in Rounds 19 and 20.
Brydens Lawyers NSW coach Brad Fittler has spoken about the positivity and energy the 30-year-old brings into Origin camp with him.
The effect he has on other players, along with his size is why Roach believes he should still be in the mix.
“I like how he finished the series off last year,” Roach told the Behind Blue Eyes podcast.
“He’s an energetic player too, I love when he’s around everyone - he’s so positive and ready to go.
“Tipping the scales at 106 kgs its’s a big man and you need big men at the back of the field.
“If it was me, I was picking the side, Fergo would be in my team.”
Ferguson’s team mate and Parramatta prop Junior Paulo has had an outstanding season, playing in all 20 NRL rounds and has shot himself into Origin contention with his ever-consistent performances.
In 2020, he has recorded 44 tackle breaks and churned out 3152 run metres including 1236 post-contact. He has also managed 49 offloads and has averaged 157 metres per game, with Roach claiming he would fit into the Origin squad perfectly.
“He brings something a little bit different rather than just being a hit-up up merchant,” Roach said.
“He’s got that really graceful offload and Parra’s play builds on that.
“He’d be perfect for State of Origin.
“I suppose what you’ve got to do is look at the team when you’ve got blokes like Payne Haas, Klemmer and Saifiti that are still in there.
“He might fit into the 27 but I don’t know whether he’ll get a starting spot.
“Depends on which way Freddy is looking at it and how far Parramatta go.”
Parramatta have a huge challenge ahead of them this Saturday night as they take on a full strength Melbourne Storm side at Suncorp Stadium in Week One of the finals.