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Rugby League Legend Cameron Smith Weighs In On The State Of Origin 'Gentlemen's Agreement'

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Rugby League Legend Cameron Smith Weighs In On The State Of Origin 'Gentlemen's Agreement'

If you were expecting to see some sort of "gentlemen's agreement" take place during State of Origin, then think again according to Cameron Smith.

The rugby league legend and future Immortal has put that idea to bed, claiming "if someone gets hit high, they will be laying on the ground".

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

During the build-up to Origin, it was rumoured that both New South Wales and Queensland had reached a deal to stamp out milking to ensure the state vs state clash wasn't overshadowed by the recent crackdown on high shots.

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The NRL's recent tightening of the rules has resulted in some players "taking a dive" in order to earn their side penalties or potentially have an opposition player sin-binned.

To combat this, Maroons captain Daly Cherry-Evans floated the idea of a "gentlemen's agreement" but his predecessor has now rubbished that idea completely.

"Please. No way," Smith told SEN 1170's 'The Captain's Run' ahead of the game on Wednesday.

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"These players are out there to win State of Origin. People don't realise how hard it is to win a State of Origin game.

"If it comes down to the last two minutes of a game or the last five minutes of the game and the scores are level and you cop a slap in the face, they will lie down. I will promise you that.

"Is it a good look for the game? No it's not but it is a direct result of these new rules. You've seen players lay down for a penalty because of how strict they are with contact. It's not a new thing with this crackdown on high tackles but if it happens tonight and scores are level, someone gets hit high, I'll tell you they will be laying on the ground."

Credit: NRL
Credit: NRL
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During his decorated rugby league career, Smith won State of Origin a whopping 11 times, scoring a total of 58 points for his beloved Queensland.

But even a tough-tackling, old-school hooker like himself admits he'd probably stay down too if the game was on the line in the dying embers of the series.

"They are paid to win. They are not paid to do anything else," Smith added.

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"Whether that means they have to have a bit of gamesmanship about them then so be it.

"If they have an opportunity to do it and don't and their team gets beaten tonight and their team goes on to lose the series, guess who they get hammered by?

"Certain parts of the media, the general public saying they didn't have a go but if they win it is happy days, patting them on the back.

"You can't blame someone if they have the opportunity to stay down, get a penalty, get two points and win the match.

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"If I was playing tonight with the rules and the way it is officiated today, I would stay down."

Featured Image Credit: NRL/PA

Topics: queensland, New South Wales, Rugby League, nrl, State of Origin, Australia

Max Sherry
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