NSW selectors have dumped half-back Brett Kimmorley and brought his Northern Eagles team-mates Adam Muir and Mark O'Meley into the Blues' squad to face Queensland in the second State Of Origin clash next Sunday. St George Illawarra five-eighth Trent Barrett replaces Kimmorley while Sydney Roosters lock Luke Ricketson takes over from discarded Canberra forward Jason Croker. Three forwards will make their debut against the Maroons in the second interstate battle after the Blues' forwards put on a dismal show in the Origin opener on May 6 which Queensland won 34-16. Sharks prop Jason Stevens was overlooked for selection in the NSW front row after he injured his neck during today's 36-6 loss to Parramatta.

Selectors retained Melbourne prop Robbie Kearns, who will team up with Eagles debutant O'Meley in the front row. Parramatta second rower Nathan Hindmarsh was omitted in favour of Muir, while Brisbane centre Michael De Vere lost his place to Penrith's goalkicking centre Ryan Girdler. His Penrith team-mates Matt Adamson and Craig Gower join Eels back rower Andrew Ryan on the Blues' bench. Newcastle forward Ben Kennedy lost his position on the bench.

NSW: Mark Hughes, Adam MacDougall, Ryan Girdler, Matthew Gidley, Jamie Ainscough, Brad Fittler (c), Trent Barrett, Luke Ricketson, Adam Muir, Bryan Fletcher, Robbie Kearns, Luke Priddis, Mark O'Meley. Res: Michael Vella, Matt Adamson, Andrew Ryan, Craig Gower.



NORTH QUEENSLAND utility Nathan Fien, Brisbane youngster Dane Carlaw and Melbourne forward Russell Bawden have been rushed into Queensland's 17-man squad for the return State of Origin match in Sydney next Sunday. Fien will take over the hooking role from injured Cowboys team-mate John Doyle, while 20-year-old Carlaw has been handed a starting role in the second row for injured skipper Gorden Tallis. Bawden, the only one of the trio to have played Origin before, will come off the bench.

Fullback Darren Lockyer became Queensland's ninth Origin skipper, replacing Tallis, who will miss the remainder of the season with a neck injury. The players, in particular, Bowman, face a team medical in Sydney tomorrow. Bowman is nursing a shoulder injury. Apart from Tallis and Doyle, the other player missing from Queensland's Origin side is front rower John Buttigieg, who is serving a three-game suspension.

Queensland: Darren Lockyer (c), Lote Tuqiri, Darren Smith, Paul Bowman, Wendell Sailor, Daniel Wagon, Paul Green, Shane Webcke, Nathan Fien, Petero Civoniceva, Dane Carlaw, Brad Meyers, Kevin Campion. Res: Chris Walker, Chris Beattie, Carl Webb, Russell Bawden.



MELBOURNE half-back Matt Orford has been called into the City Origin side despite a ruling he was eligible for Country selection. Orford played his first senior football with the Umina team on the NSW central coast but weeks later played for North Sydney, which is classifed as a city team. City coach Graham Murray said Orford was selected to play for City after the Country team opted for NSW State Of Origin discard Brett Kimmorley. Kimmorley, the incumbent Australian Test halfback, will captain the Country side which features six former or current Australians and NSW representatives. St George Illawarra second rower Lance Thompson will skipper the City team which faces Country at Carrington Oval at Bathurst on Friday night.

City: Brett Hodgson (Parramatta), Hazim El Masri (Bulldogs), Colin Best (Sharks), Mark Gasnier (St George Illawarra), Anthony Minichiello (Sydney Roosters), Adam Dykes (Sharks), Matt Orford (Northern Eagles), Steve Menzies (Northern Eagles), Lance Thompson (St George Illawarra), Jody Gall (Penrith), Jason Cayless (Parramatta), Brad Drew (Parramatta), Ian Rubin (Sydney Roosters). Res: Barry Ward (Bulldogs), Colin Ward (St George Illawarra), Ben Galea (Wests Tigers), Craig Wing (Sydney Roosters).

Country: Jason Moodie (Parramatta), Nathan Blacklock (St George Illawarra), Chris Hicks (Penrith), Timana Tahu (Newcastle), Darren Albert (Newcastle), Scott Hill (Melbourne), Brett Kimmorley (Northern Eagles), Jason Croker (Canberra), Ben Kennedy (Newcastle), Ian Hindmarsh (Parramatta) Jason Ryles (St George Illawarra), Danny Buderus (Newcastle), Darren Britt (Bulldogs). Res: Mark McLinden (Canberra), Glenn Morrison (North Queensland), Steve Simpson (Newcastle), Josh Perry (Newcastle).