DCE had one point to make but fate intervened

Daly Cherry-Evans was definitely thinking field goal as the clock wound down in Wednesday night's Origin decider at ANZ Stadium.

Scores were locked at 20-20 after Ethan Lowe had converted Josh Papalii's try in the 77th minute.

"Of course, I was thinking it. We got into field position for it, but then the ref in there had a bit of a slow play-the-ball," Cherry-Evans said in the Maroons sheds post-match.

"So my mindset wasn't for a slow play-the-ball and too much pressure … just put it in the corner and look at golden point.

"Rugby league can be a cruel game. Seventy-nine minutes of focus, just lapsed for one minute."

Mitchell Pearce linking with his outside backs in Tom Trbojevic, twinkle-toes Blake Ferguson and then James Tedesco and NSW scored for a 26-20 win.

Cherry-Evans wasn't the only one thinking about extra time in those final stages.

"I jumped up and down for a bit. When Papa scored I thought 'We're in with a chance here now'," said fullback Cameron Munster.

"I was very confident if we went to extra time because we've got Daly and Corey Norman who can really kick pressure field goals.

"So I was confident in them. But it wasn't meant to be. You've got to give credit to the Blues outfit – they played some very good footy."

Cherry-Evans cut a forlorn figure in the sheds trying to put the best spin on where Queensland let the game slip. Munster said it was in the opening 10-15 minutes of the second half when several handling errors and penalties by the Maroons took the wind out of their sails.

"Origin is made up of many moments. I can't honestly say that game came down to any one moment," Cherry-Evans said.

"Unfortunately they had more of the bigger moments tonight. Footy is a tough game when you're on the losing end of those results. Well done to the Blues side – they did well."

However, the fightback by Queensland to go from 20-8 down in the 60th minute to be 20-20 heading into the dying moments brought a smile to the skipper's face.

"As a side we never lost belief that we were going to be in this game. For 10 days [camp] we believed we were going to win it.

"So that's the most heartbreaking thing. We invested so much time and energy into that belief and while our effort and intent matched that, the scoreboard didn't."

On the winning NSW side is his Manly teammates Tom and Jake Trbojevic but DCE did not expect to receive too many sledges from the brothers.

"They are two great people and they are two very good football players," Cherry-Evans said.

"I've got no doubt they will be very humble with their victory … they were instrumental in the Blues series this year.

"I'm looking forward to playing football with them once again, having them on my side this time."

Cherry-Evans said he had every intention of backing up for the Sea Eagles taking on South Sydney back at ANZ Stadium on Saturday afternoon.