25th June 2017, 12:30 | super_league
All level in State of Origin
2017 State of Origin will all come down to the third and final game in three weeks’ time as Queensland tied the series 1-1 with an impressive comeback win over New South Wales on Wednesday.
Trailing 6-16 at the break, Dane Gagai scored a brace of second half tries, with a badly injured Johnathan Thurston kicking the winning two points - more on him below.
The deciding game of this year’s series takes place at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane on July 12.
Thurston ruled out World Cup
It was supposed to be his international swansong in his homeland later in the year, but Australian legend Johnathan Thurston will miss this autumn’s World Cup after seriously injuring his shoulder in State of Origin this week.
The three-time Golden Boot and four-time Dally M Medal winner was set to retire from representative rugby at the end of the year, and recovery time following his shoulder operation is set to be six months.
Thurston, who was set to earn his 300th NRL appearance next week, said: "The next morning doing some tests I could lift my arm above my head, out to the side whereas after the (Anzac) test I couldn't do that so it was encouraging signs [Thursday] morning."
Eight-year-old applies for Doncaster coaching vacancy
A few weeks back when Kingstone Press League 1 side Doncaster were looking for a new coach, eight-year-old Dante Fox put his name forward for the vacancy.
The young Dons fan sent his CV to chief executive Carl Hall and although the club opted for a bit more experience in the shape of Hull FC Under-23 coach Richard Horne, Dante was invited down to training earlier this week to meet his heroes.
Hall told the Doncaster website: “Dante is a big Dons fan and I hope he enjoyed his special evening with us. We gave him the full press treatment, just as Richard got, and got him joining in some of the sessions with players.”
Read more on the Doncaster RLFC site.
Crusaders hand six-year-old squad number 35
Fellow League 1 side North Wales will hand six-year-old fan Jaxon Langford the squad number 35 at today’s Welsh derby with South Wales Ironmen.
Crusaders fan Jaxon was diagnosed with stage four neuroblastoma, a type of tissue cancer, two years ago. He will be presented with his Crusaders jersey at this afternoon’s match in Wrexham.
North Wales head coach, Mike Grady, told the club’s website: “Jaxon is a fantastic lad and someone who we have all taken to hearts over the last few weeks.
“I know that he loves coming to watch us and so we wanted to do something special for him so have given him a place in the squad.”
Widnes hit Glastonbury
Rugby League strips and flags are spotted far and wide, but a few Widnes fans were flying their Vikings flag high and proud during Royal Blood’s set on Friday.
Plenty of eagle-eyed Widnes fans, as well as Warrington's Ashton Sims, posted pictures of it on social media after spotting it during Royal Blood’s performance.
The band are at number one in the album charts after releasing ‘How did we get so dark’ last week, whilst the Vikings climbed off the bottom of Super League by beating Leigh on Thursday.
Gidley gets back on the board
There aren’t too many waves to get excited about in land-locked Warrington compared to his native Newcastle on the East coast of Australia, so Wolves’ half-back Kurt Gidley was excited to crack out his surf board earlier this week.
The Wire skipper visited surf Snowdonia in Wales to take on their wave machine and posted his impressive surfing skills on Instagram.
And the mini-break paid off as he was bang in-form yesterday, with two assists for the Wolves as they beat Catalans Dragons 24-16.