Cord­ner con­fi­dent de­spite week of tribu­la­tions

Townsville Bulletin - - STATE OF ORIGIN - DEAN RITCHIE

NSW cap­tain Boyd Cord­ner has be­come a makeshift coun­sel­lor for An­drew Fi­fita as the gi­ant for­ward once again deals with dis­tract­ing off- field is­sues.

Cord­ner yes­ter­day re­vealed he had re­cov­ered from a calf in­jury and would “100 per cent” play the State of Ori­gin de­cider.

He will put the fin­ish­ing touches on his in­jury re­cov­ery at today’s cap­tain’s run on the Gold Coast.

Cord­ner has also been care­ful to look af­ter the men­tal wel­fare of Fi­fita, who was en­gulfed in a racism row af­ter a Queens­land pub posted a photo of a black doll on the back of a pa­tron claim­ing it was his daugh­ter.

“It’s hard when you have some­thing like that dur­ing the week in Ori­gin be­cause it is so am­pli­fied. It does get to you,” Cord­ner said.

“I think he has had about three of them. If any­one can do it, it is An­drew. He has been in those sit­u­a­tions be­fore.

“Just be­ing around him, he has han­dled him­self pretty well through the week. You know how much some­thing like that can get to you, es­pe­cially dur­ing a week like Ori­gin.

“You have to be aware that is go­ing on and try to help him out if he needs it.

“Ev­ery­thing has been sorted out there. He has moved on from that. He is train­ing re­ally well and he has got on with the week as nor­mal. So I will be ex­pect­ing a mas­sive game from him.

“He is over it and is mov­ing for­ward. He has big­ger and bet­ter things on his mind.”

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