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Man of the Match Daly Cherry-Evans lauded the calming influence of coach Wayne Bennett and his all-star assistant Mal Meninga after Queensland scored a dominant Origin I comeback win.

Cherry-Evans was among a slew of strong Maroons performers including centres Dane Gagai and Kurt Capewell. The captain, who recorded 168 metres from 16 runs, helped seal an 18-14 victory with a flawless second-half goal-kicking display at the Adelaide Oval.

With Queensland blooding eight debutants on Wednesday night, Cherry-Evans told Channel 9 he'd taken charge at training in the lead-up but gave most of the credit to Bennett and his crew featuring Meninga and Neil Henry.

"We're that lucky with the coaching staff we've got who have coached a lot of big games," he said.

"They definitely did a lot of the settling of the nerves during the week. It allowed me to just concentrate on being the halfback, which was good.

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"I've never been coached by Wayne before and he's definitely got a presence about him. Mal, I've been lucky enough to be coached by him a few times, and no doubt he's got a presence amongst him as well.

"But it's not unnerving, it's not unsettling, it makes you very comfortable and sure of yourself. We had that tonight."

Cherry-Evans conceded he was "one of the biggest culprits of trying to play too sideways" in the opening term as Queensland went into the break down 10-0.

He said there was a plan to be "more direct" when the action resumed.

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"Once we got those messages and once we got that clarity, I thought we found our groove," Cherry-Evans said.

The 31-year-old also praised five-eighth Cameron Munster and first-time Origin hooker Jake Friend for their efforts in steering the ship.

"I feel I was doing a fair bit of yelling tonight, but I felt like Munster and Jake took control of the second half," the Sea Eagles skipper said.

"We found a bit of joy out on the left edge and Munny's kicking game was pretty top shelf."

Bennett said the "turning point" of the second half was when Cherry-Evans, Munster and interchange playmaker Ben Hunt began to combine.

"They just started to do a few things together and started to play some football. We started to move the ball a bit and attack them on the edges," he said.

"Our forwards were going through the middle better and they [the playmakers] were getting a bit more room to move in and all of a sudden we were making guys miss some tackles."

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Sitting alongside Bennett in the press conference, Cherry-Evans kept a lid on the excitement by reminding media that Queensland won game one last year and lost the series.

He'd earlier told Nine about how different the game was under the six-again rule.

"The ruck speed - once it gets moving, mate, it's bloody quick," he said.

"I felt like that's why we were lucky to take advantage of it at the start of that second half. It was momentum."


Game two tickets start from $45 for members and $49 for general public or get your wig and experience the Blatchy’s effect from $85 for members or $90 for the general public

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