Back-rower Boyd Cordner is almost certainly out of Origin I but it has emerged Blues coach Laurie Daley has already tipped off North Queensland's Tariq Sims that he is in line for a call-up.
Cordner sprained an ankle in the 32nd minute of the Sydney Roosters' 42-10 loss to North Queensland at 1300SMILES Stadium on Saturday. ‘‘It's a high ankle sprain – we don't know the seriousness of it yet,’’ said team doctor Ameer Ibrahim. "Boyd will have some scans."
But Cowboys and Blues prop James Tamou later revealed that Daley had telephoned his teammate Sims before the match, in the wake of lock Greg Bird's suspension for a lifting tackle.
"When the whole Bird thing happened, I was sitting in the lounge cringing from the point of view of the Blues," Tamou said.
"But Tariq Sims tonight had a brilliant game and he told me during the week that Laurie spoke to him and said 'Make sure you have a big one this week against the Roosters.'
"I think he had a really big one. His defence and inside pressure was very important for how we play the game. If anyone's to fill that spot, I think it will be Tariq."
Roosters coach Trent Robinson said his side had been "taught a lesson". He dismissed the importance of halfback Mitchell Pearce being suspended from the match for off-field misbehaviour.
"We've got enough good players to cover that," he said. "We just missed a bit of character tonight.
"We've got to make sure we get over it quickly and get it right quickly. This is one of our biggest tests."
Captain Anthony Minichiello added: "We weren't in the game from the start. They got us a lot of times with their last plays .... we've got a lot of work to do.
"We were pretty ordinary in all areas but they were good."