I'm My Harshest Critic: Hayne
NSW Blues centre Jarryd Hayne admits he couldn't sleep after Origin II for coming up with two errors in the second half and bombing a near-certain try in New South Wales' shock 18-16 defeat to Queensland on Wednesday night.
Former Queensland and current Broncos coach Wayne Bennett criticised the 29-year-old for a "selfish" play in the Origin defeat when Hayne failed to set up Brett Morris for what would have been New South Wales' fourth try of the night inside 30 minutes.
Things got worse for the former Australian international when he threw a wayward flick pass with the Blues on the attack with the game on the line and later coughed up the ball with less than nine minutes remaining to hand Queensland an invitation – one they eventually took with Dane Gagai's second try.
An honest Hayne admitted he was not happy with his own personal performance in Game Two – arguably his worst in the sky blue jersey.
"I was disappointed with my [Origin II] game overall," Hayne said after the Titans' 26-14 win on Friday night.
"For me I was already off myself and found it hard to sleep after the game knowing that there were a couple of things I did wrong and a couple of penalties [I give away].
"But that [potential Morris try] was 50-50, I felt Gagai was hesitant with what to do and I probably hurt myself because I thought Peatsy was going to kick and then he passed so I had to reload and that didn't help my vision.
"Little things in the game like that do hurt you and if we score there it's game over so [Bennett's] definitely right.
"I'm my harshest critic and that [performance] is something that definitely hurts me."
Despite the Maroons losing halfback Johnathan Thurston for the decider with the Origin II hero ruled out for the rest of the season with a shoulder injury, Hayne was saddened by the news.
"I'm disappointed in two ways – one because he's not going to be there in Game Three," he said.
"And the other because it just goes to show his character, it was just unbelievable to be able to play through that."
While it was a dour affair in Campbelltown, Hayne's 10-minute burst in the second half was enough to outclass an inexperienced Wests Tigers outfit with two tries and an assist setting up the win.
Hayne revealed he battled the past 48 hours in the lead up to the clash on Friday night with injury but was desperate to take to the field and help the side snap a four-match losing streak.
"It was my back - I had spasms during the [Origin] game and held on but obviously got treatment that night, during [Thursday] and last night – the doc got me through," he said.
"I've probably done one captains run in the last three weeks so we haven't got a lot of fluency in our attack at the moment and we had to resort back to simple plays.
"We read their defence early on and knew what they were going to throw at us and accounted for it and then could exploit them."
This article first appeared on NRL.com