Bulldogs and Blues centre Josh Morris says he'll benefit from a full week in camp for Origin II after his frantic dash from Canberra to Sydney just three days out from Origin I.
Morris was perhaps surprisingly dropped ahead of Game I but was still called into camp as a shadow player for Josh Dugan, who was under an injury cloud due to his elbow – an injury which eventually forced his late withdrawal after flaring up at training.
Morris said a smoother preparation this time around will be a big boost.
"It's definitely better... Obviously last game was a bit up and down, when I found out I was 18th man I didn't participate in the ball work sessions as much as I would have liked then had to do some catching up when I came back into camp," Morris told NRL.com.
"Being named in the centres and to know you're starting you get the full week's preparation so I'm looking forward to that."
Morris freely admitted it was disappointing to learn he was not in the original 17 for Game One but still did his best to support the players that were named.
"I know everyone in the squad wanted to play in that Game I. I was obviously disappointed but it was about trying to help out those boys and obviously 'Duges' went down on the Sunday and I had to come back in. It was a bit of a disturbed prep for me but I thought I had a pretty solid game and something to build on for Game II."
Morris was a standout for the Blues, shaking off an early uncharacteristic error to come within millimetres of convincing the bunker he had scored a match-winning try late in the second half. He also did his usual job of keeping Queensland's left edge – and danger man Greg Inglis – quiet all game.
Morris said despite his original demotion it wasn't about proving anything to anyone.
"When you go out there you just want to do your job and do it well. My job is to go out there and to keep that right edge defensively strong so if I'm doing a good job there we give ourselves a shot," he said.
Coupled with a powerful game for the Bulldogs in their win over the Dragons on the weekend, there is no question Morris enters Game II in peak form.
"It's good coming in off the back of a good game in club footy and bringing that confidence in and obviously there's things you can work on from Game I. I'd like to get a bit more ball, that's something that we can work on as a right edge and keep building those combinations," he said.
Asked about his right edge combination with inside man and Bulldogs teammate Josh Jackson as well as Roosters winger Blake Ferguson on his outside, Morris said he felt they combined well.
"Fergo in his first Origin (in Game I 2013), he played outside me and he did a great job and we worked well together in Origin I (this year)," Morris said.
"We had good communication together and he got through a fair bit of work. Jacko, I know what he does for our club side each week so I know he's not going to let me down either. I guess it's about working on our combinations that we have in club footy and transferring it into this side as well."
This article first appeared on NRL.com
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