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Maroons Origin III team: Hamiso to debut; Ponga back; Fifita banned

Queensland will unleash teenage speedster Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow after coach Paul Green opted to look to the future ahead of the State of Origin game three dead rubber.

North Queensland's Tabuai-Fidow has been named to make his Origin debut for the July 14 clash in a re-jigged backline that welcomes the return of Newcastle X-factor Kalyn Ponga from a groin injury that sidelined him for the two first games.

Tabuai-Fidow - just 19 - slots into centre for Penrith's Kurt Capewell who relocates to the starting back-row after being tormented by Tom Trbojevic in NSW's convincing wins that sealed a third series win in four years for the Blues under coach Brad Fittler.

Dane Gagai remains in the centres, earning a reprieve despite being exposed by a rampant Latrell Mitchell in the series to date.

Brisbane's Xavier Coates also retains his spot on the wing after coming in on game day for Origin II following an eligibility drama that forced Cronulla flyer Ronaldo Mulitalo's withdrawal.

But fellow winger Kyle Feldt has not been so lucky, making way for North Queensland teammate Valentine Holmes who moves from fullback to cater for Ponga's return.

In other starting line-up changes, Green has moved St George Illawarra playmaker Ben Hunt from the role of utility bench weapon to hooker for game three at Andrew McCullough's expense after Melbourne No.9 Harry Grant failed to overcome a hamstring complaint.

The back-row has also received a tweak with South Sydney's Jai Arrow moving into lock and Gold Coast's incumbent Maroons No.13 Tino Fa’asuamaleaui shifted to the bench.

Match Highlights: Maroons v Blues

Titans wrecking ball David Fifita will miss the game after he was found guilty of dangerous contact at the NRL judiciary on Tuesday night.

Game two debutant, Cowboys forward Francis Molo, looks set to come into the starting side in Fifita's absence.

Gold Coast flyer AJ Brimson is another welcome addition, slotting on to the bench after overcoming a knee complaint that sidelined him for Origin II.

Brisbane's Thomas Flegler and Newcastle's Kurt Mann will enter Maroons camp for the first time as part of the extended squad.

The Maroons will be desperate to salvage some pride in game three in Green's horror first series at the helm after a record-breaking loss in the opener was backed up by a 26-0 defeat in Origin II - the first time the Maroons had been held scoreless at Suncorp Stadium in the interstate series' history.

Hammer: I was lost for words over Maroons call-up

Maroons team

  1. Kalyn Ponga - Newcastle Knights
  2. Valentine Holmes - North Queensland Cowboys
  3. Dane Gagai - South Sydney Rabbitohs
  4. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow - North Queensland Cowboys
  5. Xavier Coates - Brisbane Broncos
  6. Cameron Munster - Melbourne Storm
  7. Daly Cherry-Evans - Manly Sea Eagles
  8. Christian Welch - Melbourne Storm
  9. Ben Hunt - St George Illawarra Dragons
  10. Josh Papalii - Canberra Raiders
  11. Kurt Capewell - Penrith Panthers
  12. Felise Kaufusi - Melbourne Storm
  13. Jai Arrow - South Sydney Rabbitohs
  14. AJ Brimson - Gold Coast Titans
  15. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui - Gold Coast Titans
  16. Moeaki Fotuaika - Gold Coast Titans
  17. Francis Molo - North Queensland Cowboys
  18. Kurt Mann - Newcastle Knights
  19. Thomas Flegler - Brisbane Broncos
Acknowledgement of Country

St George Illawarra Dragons respect and honour 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 Islanders peoples, where our games are played, our programs are conducted and in the communities we support.

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