Rookie Wests Tigers playmaker Mitchell Moses showed glimpses of his promise as he steered NSW to a 30-8 victory over Queensland in a fiery under 20s Origin match at Sportingbet Stadium on Saturday night.
Moses, who was thrust into the halfback role after the Tigers pulled Luke Brooks out of the curtain-raiser to the Fiji-Samoa Test match, outpointed frustrated Maroons five-eighth Anthony Milford as the young Blues outfit produced a performance that must give hope to NSW officials for the future.
Newcastle winger Jake Mamo was another of the Blues stars. He finished with the first hat-trick of tries in the three-year history of under 20s Origin fixture and the Darren Lockyer Medal as man of the match. Knights centre Sione Mata'utia also impressed.
Moses, the nephew of NSW and Balmain great Ben Elias, had a hand in four of the Blues' tries and directed the team superbly as they dominated what was a strong Queensland team on paper.
Besides Milford, the Maroons also boasted his Canberra teammates Brenko Lee and Luke Bateman, Parramatta winger John Folau, Cronulla fullback Valentine Holmes and Canterbury prop Lloyd Perrett, who was arguably his side's best.
Folau and NSW prop Matt Lodge, from the Storm, were sinbinned for punching after separate melees in the first half.
The younger brother of Wallabies superstar Israel Folau scored Queensland's only first-half try upon his return just before the interval, but the Blues dominated the match from the time Bulldogs winger Tyrone Phillips crossed in the 10th minute off a long Kaysa Pritchard pass after the Maroons allowed a Moses bomb to bounce.
Mamo got his first try four minutes later when he pounced on a sixth-tackle grubber kick from Manly prop Jake Trbojevic and he scored again in the 27th minute after the Blues took advantage of Folau's absence after he reacted to a push by NSW forward Dean Britt on Milford in the ruck and was sin binned for punching.
Mamo had another try disallowed in the the 36th minute after referee Chris Sutton ruled the final pass from Mata'utia had been forward after a long ball from Moses had created an overlap.
Folau, who appeared to shoulder charge Mata'utai after he had passed, then scored to reduce NSW's half-time lead to 18-4 when he finished a movement featuring Milford and Holmes.
However, Matu'utai had the last laugh when he steamed onto a perfectly timed pass from Moses to cross in the 52nd minute and effectively put the result beyond doubt.
Mamo completed his hat-trick in the 67th minute, before Bateman grabbed a consolation try in what was a frustrating night for the Maroons and Milford.
The story Mitchell Moses stars as NSW win under 20s Origin clash first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.