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According to Paul Gallen, it was NSW’s ‘line in the sand’ moment after years of Queensland’s “grubby tactics”.
But Maroons great Billy Slater reckons ex-NSW skipper Gallen was simply frustrated after years of Queensland dominance when he threw his infamous 2013 State of Origin punch.
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QLD’s revenge on Price KO
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Gallen’s one-sided fisticuffs with Queensland prop Nate Myles lasted barely 30 seconds in the series opener seven years ago.
However, its impact is still being felt after the NRL launched a crackdown on fighting in the aftermath.
Gallen has been adamant over the years that he was taking a stand for the Blues when he clocked Myles, claiming the Maroons had been “playing dirty” for some time.
Not surprisingly Slater has a very different take.
“When Paul Gallen put one on Nate Myles, to be honest I think that was a build- up of frustration,” former Maroons fullback Slater told Wide World of Sports.
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“That was game one of 2013, so New South Wales have just lost seven straight series.
“I know Gal says that he just had enough of the niggle from Nate Myles, well if that’s the case everyone’s lining up for one on the chin.
“It was just a build-up of frustration and poor old Nate couldn’t get his head out of the road.” Like most things Origin, who you believe depends on which side of the Tweed you reside.
For the record, Gallen is still standing by his story.
Billy Slater tackles Paul Gallen.Source:News Limited
He relayed it again just last week, claiming that Myles’ niggling had been the final straw after years of Queensland treating NSW players “like their playthings”.
“Nate twisted my knee in a tackle. I went to Nate and I said ‘if you do that again, I’m gonna punch you in the head’,” he told WWOS.
“There was less than a minute to go before half-time and Nate was having a run.
“So I did give him a little tap in the head and he rolled over … and gave me an elbow back.
“As he got up to play the ball, he gave me a big shove and said ‘is that the best you’ve got?’ and came charging towards me … (and) I just thought ‘I’m gonna get in first, I’m gonna punch him’. So that’s how it all happened.”
Originally published asSlater says Gallen’s Origin punch was frustration at Maroons dominance
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