Bennett wants Origin eligibility ‘shemozzle’ reviewed
Queensland coach Wayne Bennett has called for the Origin eligibility rules to be reviewed after admitting that the Maroons considered picking Blues No.6 Luke Keary.
The NSW debutant was born in Queensland and lived there until he was 11, but will play his first Origin in the sky blue and Bennett believes it might be time to look at the rules again.
"If all the other criteria is a bit messy and muddy, I suppose that (a player's birthplace) should be a criteria," Bennett was quoted in The Courier Mail.
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"Most rules need revising from time to time, things do change.
"There is a lot of change in our game and who plays the game now, so maybe it is worthwhile looking at the rules, but it won't help anybody this year."
Early in his career Keary wrote to the NRL to try and allow him to play for Queensland, but has since pledged his allegiance to the Blues.
Bennett revealed that Queensland made every effort to secure Keary's services and believes the rules may need to be looked at just like every rule in the game.
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"Keary has been considered for Queensland," Bennett said.
"I understand the QRL have sent letters away and everything else, but they (the NRL) didn't consider that he should be a Queenslander, so he is playing for NSW.
"I first went to a meeting about that (Origin eligibility) 10 or 15 years ago because it was a shemozzle then, so what's changed?
"I was there all those years ago and I felt we made good decisions then about it, we haven't had a lot of problems with it since but there is always one example that will challenge us all.
"Queensland has done all it can do and we have to live with it."
Bennett was pressed on whether he would select a player who had previously applied to play for the Blues.
"I would ... if he was the best player, I would take him,' Bennett said.
Originally published as Bennett wants Origin eligibility 'shemozzle' reviewed after QLD miss out on Keary