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Special: State of Origin 2!

The greatest rivalry in Australian sport is back. AGAIN!

No, note the Maroons versus the Blues. It’s TipBetPro versus the bookies.

Origin 1 – A reminder

For those with short term memory issues, Origin 1 was an arm wrestle, peppered with controversial refereeing and a cameo to forget from Dylan Walker.

We had had a detailed look at all things Origin before game 1, plugged the teams into the model and out popped the following analysis:

Queensland Player Advantage + 6 points

NSW Home Ground Advantage + 4 points

Overall prediction – Queensland to win by 2 points in a low scoring game (like 6-4).

Actual result Queensland won 6-4.

So take from what you will. Hopefully a feeling that either we are very lucky, so worth following, or geniuses, and also worth following!

Historic series winners

So a brief reminder of what’s happened in the past (primarily as the graph took a while to do and we want the mileage):

So as you will all know, Queensland have dominated in recent times, with an 8 game winning streak from 2006, followed by a surprise (well they had lost the previous 8) win for the Blues, before “normal” service was resumed last year, and the Maroons won again. Is it “normal” service, or was last year the anomaly, as an era of NSW dominance commences? Well after Origin 1 it looks like normal service has resumed!

The Ins and Outs

As we reminded you in Origin 1, it’s a team based game, and is all about the 17 who take to the park each week. And based on the teams in Origin 1 we had the Maroons with the advantage based on TipBetPro’s player ratings.

So what has changed since Origin 1?

Well a little bit of form change for each player (the model is dynamic like myself) and some injuries, with both teams losing a player each when the initial teams were announced (Myles for Queensland and Cordner for NSW). What hasn’t changed in the Blues questionable selections – more the ones they haven’t made than those who are selected? James Tedesco anyone!!

So Queensland have brought in Lillyman and NSW’s first pick as replacement was Wade Graham. He was then banned and in came Tyson Frizell. Since them Josh Morris has also gone down, with Jack Bird moving into the 17, with Dylan Walker starting!

The TipBetPro player rankings are as follows:

So the Queensland player advantage has increased by 4 points since Origin 1 and now stands at +10 points (note Robbie Farah dropped a point mainly due to his Round 10 knock out (he was knocked out not the other way around) which has impacted his score. A bit harsh but our model doesn’t take into account minutes played, yet!).

Matt Gillet is now the highest ranked player, reflecting his recent form, including MoM in Origin 1.

The Referees

We wouldn’t normally mention this, but given NSW coach Laurie Daley sensationally (wording from SMH – not sure it’s that sensational) claimed he will ask for State of Origin referees Gerard Sutton and Ben Cummins to be axed for game two we thought we have a look at how successful he has been.

Oh well, nothing ventured and all that, but it appears Laurie should have asked more forcibly. Or maybe he should have just picked Tedesco!

Home State Advantage

As mentioned last time playing at home is a big advantage and this is confirmed when looking at the statistics. The two main venues are Lang Park (Suncorp) and Stadium Australia (ANZ) and they are pretty much identical in favouring the home team. In terms of Suncorp, there has been 49 games there, and 30 favour the Maroons.

Recent history has been even more one sided. The last 5 games have seen one NSW victory (12-8) in their 2014 series win, with the Maroons winning 52-6 last year, 32-8 the year before, 26-6 and a close 21-20 in 2012.

Nearly 60% of Origin games have been settled by less than 10 points and for Origin 1 recent history showed games at ANZ are always tight – hence we thought the NSW advantage was only +4. But the Maroons average margin is over 12 points when they win at SunCorp!

So, the Queensland home advantage would appear to be more than the equivalent for NSW, but there is far more variance, and it could be anything. That said, on the balance of recent history (and discounting last year’s record margin a fair bit) we are going to suggest Queensland playing at home is worth at least a try and a Thurston kick. We will go with a converted try being the difference, so +6 for Queensland.

The “Origin 2” Prediction

So Queensland have the better players and this time they have the crowd.

All up we predict a +16 point win to Queensland.

So using our model, this equates to a 67% probability of a Queensland win, and as its stands you can get odds of around 1.53. This is turn means an expected value of around 1, so would be a Recommend No Bet (like in Origin 1).

We really fancy the line bet for Origin 2, Queensland (-4.5) and this is our main recommendation.

And why not have a go on the first try scorer too. We recommended Corey Oates in Origin 1, but it wasn’t exactly a try fest. Can he get over in Queensland? Why not! So let’s go Corey again!

Our tip for the Wally Lewis medal was Cameron Smith and we will let that one roll (well have no choice!) and will back this up by suggesting he’s a man of the match contender for Origin 2.

Series Winner

Given the player advantage is not huge and the recent history, our analysis at the start of the series suggested a 2-1 series win is more likely, and Queensland are the team most likely to win it. So we recommended getting on this at 2.60. This has now come in to around 1.90, and is still the most likely result in our opinion.

Hope you enjoyed our look at Origin 2 and good luck to you all.

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