While Sam Thaiday was making filthy sex jokes after Wednesday's State of Origin opener, Johnathan Thurston was proving he's the classiest player in the Queensland team.

The Maroons took care of business on the field with a narrow 6-4 win. Thurston took care of business off the field, using a post-match interview to reach out to a struggling North Queensland community.

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Speaking with Channel Nine's Erin Molan, Thurston addressed the situation in Aurukun, where teachers at a local school have fled violence and students are refusing to turn up to school.

"I just want to say a quick hello to the Aurukun State School," Thurston said.


"There's obviously been a lot of trouble up there, so to all the students there, I just want you to believe in yourselves and keep turning up to school."

Thurston then found a young Queenslander fan in the crowd and sparked emotional scenes by handing the young boy his head gear.