Andrew Ryan: Josh Jackson ready for Origin debut with Blues
FORMER New South Wales back-rower Andrew Ryan believes it is time for impressive Bulldogs youngster Josh Jackson to make his Origin debut later this month.
Jackson starred in Country's 34-22 win over City last Sunday, making 75m, 33 tackles and a try assist.
At 24 - and with a number of Blues and Maroons stars showing their age in Australia's loss to New Zealand on Sunday - it would seem the ideal time for NSW to blood Jackson.
"I don't like tossing up names come State of Origin time, but Jackson was one of the best players on the field in the City v Country game," Ryan told APN.
"I think State of Origin would suit him. He's a great defender, and can also play in the centres, at five-eighth and on either edge of the field."
Ryan also believes Knights back-rower Tariq Sims, 25, deserves his shot at Origin, with Game I at ANZ Stadium on May 27.
Sims ran for 97m, made 16 tackles, made a line break and scored a try for Country on the weekend.
"I thought Tariq Sims was capable of playing Origin a few years ago, but unfortunately he missed out," Ryan said.
"The next tier of back-rowers coming through looks promising, with the likes of Tyson Frizell and Joel Thompson in the mix."
Ryan said confidence had returned to the Blues' camp after they broke Queensland's magnificent eight-series run of victories last year.
"People said Origin was dying in the early 2000s when New South Wales was dominant, then Queensland went on that run," Ryan said.
"Origin can always go either way, but there's definitely a confidence that (Blues coach) Laurie Daley has brought back to the camp."