Blues fans hope to lift NSW to series-levelling win
The sea of blue jerseys matched the vibrant blue of Wednesday's Sydney sky as Origin fans packed into ANZ Stadium.
The sold out crowd of 30,000 footy fans were itching for kick-off to see if the Blues could even the score after last week's loss to the Queensland Maroons.
Blues fanatic Howard Newby said being at the game was a once in a lifetime opportunity for him and his family, who are normally based overseas but were trapped in Australia due to COVID.
"We're Australians but we don't live here, we live and work in Philippines but because of COVID we're back here," he said.
"I've watched every game since 1985 and when I'm there I always try to figure out a way to see the game and if I can't get to see it I'm pretty shattered.
"We've had a tough year with Covid, so to come to the stadium is a once in a lifetime for the kids."
Son Joshua is the biggest fan of the Howard kids, whose favourite player is Souths gun Damien Cook.
"Dad was watching it and I just got into it more and more," he said.
"Damien Cook is my favourite, he's a really good player, fast and really good.
"I'll scream my head off if he scores."
Chris Klus and son Tyler, 6, were on a boys trip, using the opportunity to travel from the Central Coast and stay in Parramatta for a couple of nights.
Chris said they couldn't be more excited for game two.
"On a scale of one to 10 it's a ten for excitement," he said.
"It'll mean everything to push it to a decider. Nobody wants to go into the third game none from two."
Queensland fans Brad and Jessie Middlebosch moved from the Gold Coast to NSW two years ago and weren't worried about being heavily outnumbered by the Blues army.
"We love it, it's all about the atmosphere for us," Brad said.
"We hope both teams turn up to play."
Blues tragic Jason Khoury had some strong words to say about the game.
"If Queensland win I might hang myself," he joked.
"This game means pride and hope.
"We want to see them play hard and embarrass Queensland."
As for the reduced numbers attending, he said it didn't matter.
"It doesn't matter and you forget about covid, we're more worried about the game.
"F**k Queensland they already locked us out."
Originally published as Blues fans hope to lift NSW to series-levelling win