Valentine Holmes has the unenviable task of filling the legendary boots of Johnathan Thurston and Cameron Smith when he takes over the goalkicking for Queensland in this year's State of Origin series.

The Kangaroos star was yesterday chosen ahead of veteran Darius Boyd and survived a serious push from Corey Oates to be the left wing for game one on June 6.

His ability to kick goals was undoubtedly a factor but the Cronulla flyer admits the responsibility will come with some pressure given he's not even first-choice at club level.

"It'd be a bit nerve-racking. I don't even goal kick for my club," Holmes said. "But me and Chad [Townsend] always have competitions every training day. It's not going to be a new thing to me. I used to goal-kick last year when Jimmy [Maloney] was out. If they asked me to do it, if I'm there, I'll definitely try and kick them all."


Thurston exited the Origin arena with an impressive 80 per cent strike rate, knocking over 99 of 124 attempts in his 37 appearances for the state.

Smith, who hit three of five in last year's decider, finished with a modest 63 per cent. Holmes has a career strike rate of 72 per cent, ahead of other potential game-one kickers Ben Hunt (69 per cent) and Cameron Munster (65 per cent).

Holmes had set his sights on taking the kicking tee for the Sharks this year but lost out to Townsend after arriving to pre-season late due to World Cup commitments.

Queensland coach Kevin Walters conceded he was worried about his team's goalkicking this year.

"I am concerned, to some degree. But Valentine Holmes has kicked, Cameron Munster has kicked for the Storm this year and Ben Hunt has kicked as well."

Origin squad


Billy Slater, Valentine Holmes, Greg Inglis (c), Will Chambers, Dane Gagai, Cameron Munster, Ben Hunt, Dylan Napa, Andrew McCullough, Jarrod Wallace, Gavin Cooper, Felise Kaufusi, Josh McGuire.



Michael Morgan, Josh Papalii, Coen Hess, Jai Arrow.