Andrew Johns labels NSW Blues ‘dumbest ever’ after Origin loss

Will Chambers of the Maroons (right) is tackled by James Maloney (right) and Andrew Fifita of the Blues during State of Origin Game II between the NSW Blues and Queensland Maroons, at ANZ Stadium in Sydney on Wednesday, June 21, 2017.Queensland’s “cauldron” at Suncorp Stadium is regarded as the most intimidating venue in the land for an opposition team but NSW presented a similarly hostile environment last night before a sellout crowd of 80,000 fans sweating on a victory that would deliver the Origin title for only the second time in 12 years.Johns let rip after the 18-16 loss, blasting “the dumbest half of football NSW have played” that blew a deserved 16-6 halftime lead at ANZ Stadium.”They had all the running, their gameplan was flawless”, Johns said on the Nine Network post game.”His shoulder his stuffed”.The 34-year-old has only played one club game since Round 6 and was in visible distress carrying his right arm for most of the night but that didn’t stop him from etching his name into the annals of history with a play that summed up Queensland’s seemingly-endless dynasty.”You got a player out there that cannot pick his arm up off the ground and they didn’t target him, his side of the field, or go at the defenders either side”.’They didn’t go to him once in the second half.”I couldn’t believe NSW got beaten”.You’ve got a player out there who can not pick his arm up off the ground and they didn’t target his side of the field. I don’t know what they were doing’.Dugan, who was one of the Blues’ best after he shifted to fullback when James Tedesco left the field due to a head knock, admitted NSW had taken their foot off the pedal after establishing a 10-point lead.”I think we lost our way and probably didn’t play how we needed to”.”They stopped playing, then they went back to this out-the-back block plays and were no threat”. “I haven’t sat down with him and maybe after this game or game three we’ll have a chat, but he hasn’t said anything [about his future yet]”. Paying through the middle, playing fast.”I thought as the second half went on we gained ascendency and put pressure on New South Wales”. We knew if we started well, held the ball, we’d get our opportunity.Slater was in tears after the match, capping off a return from back-to-back career-threatening shoulder surgeries.”He’s too good a player for him to do what he did”. “We’d make a good first few tackles and give away cheap yards”.Thurston stepped up amid a stadium full of boos to clinch a famous Maroons win. “It’s what dreams are made of”.NSW Origin legend Phil Gould says it creates an intriguing race against the clock to get Thurston fit for the series decider – expected to be Thurston’s last ever Origin game.”We were behind the eight-ball at half-time, but we kept fighting and working for each other and we got the job done in the end”. “But that guy is a champion player and he made a very poor decision”.