Hodkinson joins list of unlikely Origin heroes

Adam Mogg scores for Queensland during game two of the 2006 State of Origin series at Suncorp Stadium. Photo: Craig GoldingTrent Hodkinson has joined a list of unlikely Origin heroes after his match-winning performance on Wednesday night.The Blues halfback may yet still have a decorated Origin career after directing the Blues to help end Queensland’s dominance in just his second game. However the Bulldogs halfback was a somewhat selection “smokie” when he was picked ahead of the likes of Mitchell Pearce, Jarrod Mullen and Adam Reynolds for game one.He wasn’t part of the Blues pre-Origin camps, and he wasn’t deemed good enough to be named to start for City Origin this year. But when Hodkinson scooted to the line in the 71st minute he will forever be remembered as the player who stopped the streak.Unlikely Origin heroesAdam Mogg: The headlines read “Adam who?” when the lanky Canberra centre was plucked for obscurity and onto the wing for the Maroons in 2006. Mogg was a solid first-grader, but when he strolled onto Suncorp Stadium in a Maroons jersey he rose to another level. He scored two tries in Queensland’s 30-6 romp to go close to man of the match honours in game two. He would play one final Origin later that series, scoring another try.

Brett Finch: Six weeks before Finch’s Origin call-up he wasn’t even the first-choice halfback for the Sydney Roosters in 2006. But Finch would leave his mark on the Origin arena after being rushed to the squad when a host of halfbacks including Craig Gower, Matt Orford, Andrew Johns and Trent Barrett were unavailable for game one. He may have had less than 24 hours notice to play, but Finch’s 78th-minute field goal gave the Blues a 17-16 win. He would play one more Origin.Shaun Timmins: Timmins was made for Origin football. Had it not been for dodgy knees he would’ve played more than his nine games. Timmins, playing in the unfamiliar position of five-eighth for NSW, only kicked two field goals in his rugby league career but none better than his wobbly 40-metre effort in extra time to give the Blues a 9-8 win in 2004.John Simon: When Simon was asked to fill the void left by Andrew Johns, few would have predicted that he would’ve won the game with a field goal. Johns’ injury forced Geoff Toovey to hooker and allowed Simon to start just the second  game of his Origin career in 1997. The Blues rushed to a 14-4 lead only to have the Queenslanders draw equal before Simon hit his one-pointer in the 67th minute. Simon played his final Origin game off the bench in game three.Wayne Bartim: While Bartrim may have been a steady kicker for his club side St George, he never kicked a more important goal than in his Origin debut. With Super League players unavailable, Batrim was picked at hooker in 1995 and his penalty goal proved the difference in game one. That match would set up Queensland for arguably the most famous series win in history, with the Paul Vautin-coached side clean sweeping the three games.

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