TODAY |

Wayne Bennett half-time pep talk inspires young Queensland to surprise victory

A young Queensland side has drawn first blood in State of Origin, upstaging a much more fancied New South Wales in Adelaide.

Wayne Bennett

Despite a 10-0 lead at the break, the Blues were blown away in the second half by the rookie Maroons who ran away with a 18-14 upset.

A halftime masterclass from Queensland coach Wayne Bennett sparked a sensational comeback from his young players.

"I wasn't happy at 10-0 but I wasn't worried," Bennett said.

"10-0 is always gettable, if they had gone to 16-0 or 20-0 that would have been worrying.

"I thought we won it in the first half, actually, because we hung in there and hung in there and we didn't concede any soft tries. I thought that was important.

"They will be better, they have just got to toughen up mentally to come back and do it again next week. The hard thing is coming off the high and coming back to play against a team that got beaten tonight."

Bennett turned back the clock in his fourth stint in charge of Queensland after answering an SOS call to take over the side.

The unexpected win means NSW must win both remaining games to retain the Origin shield.