Queensland have had no answer to NSW’s recent dominance.
Queensland have had no answer to NSW’s recent dominance.

It’s time! Reds great demands end to Tahs dominance

FORMER Reds captain Peter Slattery insists it's way overdue for Queensland rugby to emerge from the "horrific darkness" of nine straight losses to old enemy NSW.

The livewire halfback from Queensland's Super 10 title triumphs of 1994-95 said the current players should all make Saturday's clash at the Sydney Cricket Ground a personal mission.

"It's time...the Reds have shown the signs they can have a good crack at this one and I love that they are back in the maroon jersey to do it," the Coolum-based Slattery said.

 

"In my day, it was hate for the blue NSW jersey.

"I know the game has evolved but look to any sport and that Queensland desire to beat NSW is still intense and should always be."

Slattery said that reducing mistakes, like aimless kicking, and better finishing opportunities was crucial to sustaining heat on a Waratahs side which has been both brilliant and careless.

He's a big fan of the spark the Reds are getting from pacy young halfbacks Moses Sorovi and Tate McDermott.

Peter Slattery says the time is now for the Reds.
Peter Slattery says the time is now for the Reds.

"Nine losses in a row is horrific...it's a number that's very hard to take," Slattery said.

"I've had mates slap Waratahs stickers on the back window of my car during that time so a win would mean a lot to guys of my vintage and older.

"I still remember losing one game to NSW in the 1990s, going home, sitting on my back verandah and just staring into the darkness for ages.

"It meant that much and I'm sure it still does."

Slattery's passion for the interstate game is from an era when it had a huge stand-alone focus as a Wallabies' selection trial rather than being just a week in an 18-round competition.

Reds coach Brad Thorn was brought up on the ferocity of Queensland-NSW in rugby league's Origin series and how he feeds the mentality of his troops this week will be significant.

The Reds put up a decent showing against the Crusaders last weekend.
The Reds put up a decent showing against the Crusaders last weekend.

His Reds came up well short 37-16 at the SCG last year and in the 52-41 try-fest in Brisbane.

Thorn must first settle on a centre pairing with Duncan Paia'aua fancied to earn promotion as in-form Samu Kerevi's partner.

Injured young gun Jordan Petaia underwent surgery on Monday on his separated mid-foot ligament which will sideline him for at least four months.

The decisive move is a smart one because former Reds halfback Sam Cordingley made several stalled comeback attempts in 2006 when delaying surgery on the same fickle injury.

Centre Petaia will miss the rest of the Reds' season but regaining fitness by early July would make him available for camps with the Wallabies.

Fullback Bryce Hegarty (ribs) was involved in the team's light session at Ballymore on Monday.