Brad Fittler’s innovative methods and selection strategy paid off. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)
Brad Fittler’s innovative methods and selection strategy paid off. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)

Freddy arrives and it all clicks into place

YOGA instructors across NSW, open your doors this morning for free.

At recess today, primary school kids should be excused from detention, for running in bare feet.

And mums and dads, try putting that mobile phone away tonight at dinner.

Let's call it our tribute. It's the least we can do.

A small gesture of thanks to Brad Fittler, the zany NSW coach who ripped apart the old Blues fabric with the only style that mattered - his own.

 

Without fear, self-consciousness or concern for the critics, Fittler, 46, took the Blues into his stress-free world - a place that no NSW side has been before.

And we're not only talking about returning to Coogee.

Fittler did it by refusing to pick players with scars from Origin defeat.

He did it with a bunch of in-form, fast and fearless men.

Brad Fittler’s innovative methods and selection strategy paid off. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)
Brad Fittler’s innovative methods and selection strategy paid off. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)

But perhaps more importantly, Fittler went with level-headed men without mug-lair or baggage.

Fittler's radical overhaul included yoga classes before breakfast, ballwork sessions sans shoes to "absorb the earth's minerals" and throwing every player to the hungry press every day of camp.

"If they can't handle an interview - how are they going to handle Origin?,'' Fittler quipped before Origin I.

He handed this young, energetic team, back to it's people, visiting hospitals after training and feeding the homeless at night.

And seriously, what professional sporting team in the world would walk out of their team hotel and onto the streets with the energy-fuelled and emotionally-charged public, just two before kick-off?

Fittler values the power of Origin and character it can breed, which is in-part, why he asked his 12-year-old son Zach to be the Blues ball boy.

Fittler’s squad overhaul was rewarded within two games. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)
Fittler’s squad overhaul was rewarded within two games. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)

Freddy Fittler's team won back the Origin shield on Sunday night - but they've done much more than that.

We've got a group of men to be proud of, who respect their position in the game.

Only a month ago, many of the NSW players had never met each other.

But under Fittler they woke each day in Coogee to 'cat-cow' on yoga mats.

They took boat rides on Sydney Harbour, learning the gospel of Origin as NSW adviser Greg Alexander cried with passion in front of them.

With every day they began to learn how lucky they were. Selfish culture? Not anymore.

Before winning Origin I in Melbourne, before last night's epic victory, Fittler made it his priority that this NSW team would appreciate every moment of every day.

Fittler surrounded his young stars with belief.

Greg Inglis congratulates Fittler following the match. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)
Greg Inglis congratulates Fittler following the match. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts)

Rookie Nathan Cleary had an immortal in Andrew Johns to lean on.

Speedy hooker Damien Cook would eat cornflakes each morning with series-winning captain Danny Buderus.

Phil Gould, the Blues most successful coach in history, was chosen to present the players jersey's on Saturday night.

For the first time since 2014, NSW are State of Origin champions.

They can make it a 3-0 nil clean-sweep in Origin III in 17-days at Brisbane's Suncorp Stadium.

Fittler will tell them they can do it.

He was the last captain to do so 18-years ago in 2000.

 

Watch the 2018 State of Origin Series LIVE or ON DEMAND anywhere outside AU, NZ and Pacific Islands on WATCH NRL. GRAB YOUR PASS NOW >



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