You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content
Temara's top five Origin moments

For Harvey Norman Queensland Maroons half Zahara Temara, rugby league means everything. Wearing maroon means everything.

“I moved over here when I was very young and wearing maroon means I get to represent everyone who has helped me, especially my family,” Temara said.

“Everyone who has helped me on my journey.”

Temara said she took representing the Maroons very seriously.

“I take it very personally… representing the state of Queensland… I cherish it, I love it and I want to do it forever,” Temara said.

The 26-year-old said she grew up watching State of Origin during the dynasty era, so it was always good.

“You could never take your eyes off Johnathan Thurston and I loved watching Greg Inglis as well… and Billy Slater,” Temara said.

“They were all players who had a big impact on the game at crucial moments when they had to step up and take the game over for Queensland. I loved that.”

Temara said it was an honour to be playing on the Origin stage as a woman.

“You really have to pinch yourself,” Temara said.

“I've been in the team for a little while now but having little girls come up to you to meet you, be around you, is really an honour.

“We hold onto that feeling and try to inspire those girls. It’s very special and it’s something that none of us take lightly.

“We’re on the big screen so it’s our job to inspire and it’s awesome we’re doing that.”

Temara’s top five Origin moments

1. Debut in 2017

"Number one for me would be my debut in 2017. That was a special moment."

2. First win in maroon colours

"First win in maroon colours at the Sunshine Coast in 2020. It was a relief, to be honest, because we were playing at home – playing at the Sunshine Coast – and we’d been in the bubble for two weeks. It was very special and we were all relieved, more than anything, to get the job done at home."

3. Getting the vice-captaincy in 2023

"Getting the vice-captaincy was a special one for me and for my family. It’s a huge honour and something that I don’t take for granted. Definitely a big one."

4. Being coached by past players

"Having our past players around, being coached by them, being mentored by them, being managed by them. Having Tahnee Norris as our head coach, Boney Baker having been around, assistant coach Karyn Murphy, Jo Barratt around doing what she does. Meg Ward as well. Not only having them around, but getting our past players to present players with their jerseys. We’ve had a number of them come in and talk about the jersey and how they want nothing for the best for us and that’s pretty special. It inspires us to get the job done."

5. Hearing past players speak

"I love hearing about past players and what they achieved. Steph Hancock is one. She loves this jersey, she loves this state, and I love how passionate she is. To hear her talk about the dynasty they had, they won for about 17 years in a row before it was State of Origin, and the stories they tell… it was never easy. They always got the job done for Queensland. And we want to replicate that now. We have the shield and we don’t want to give it back to New South Wales. We want to keep it. We’re definitely looking to make our own dynasty. That’s a big one for me. I love hearing past players speak every camp. Their stories never get old. They inspire us to want to be better and find that grit within us. It doesn’t matter what team we put out there, whether it’s the best team or not, we know we’ll get the job done."

Back the Maroons for the 2024 series by becoming a Maroons member

Acknowledgement of Country

Queensland Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

Platinum Partners

View All Partners