27 May 2015

Who are the State of Origin favourites?

10:06 am on 27 May 2015

Neither the defending champion New South Wales nor the multiple series-winning Queensland side want to be labelled favourites heading into tonight's opening State of Origin match in Sydney.

The experienced Queensland side which won eight successive series before narrowly losing to the Blues last year is favourite with bookmakers.

But Queensland captain Cameron Smith had no hesitation in New South Wales favourites.

"They are playing at home so they are favourites," Smith said on Monday.

"The Blues are very confident. They have the Shield in their cabinet in NSW and we have to try and take it off them.

"They are a very strong side, particularly their bench with damaging ball runners like [David] Klemmer and [Andrew] Fifita there."

Queensland skipper Cameron Smith (left).

Queensland skipper Cameron Smith (left). Photo: Photosport

If the NSW Blues are confident, coach Laurie Daley is doing his best to disguise that and has spoken of the fear he has for the Queensland side.

Queensland will field field an experienced side that, despite losing the first two games of the 2014 series, showed it is far from a spent force with a 32-8 thumping of the Blues in the final game.

"It is going to take a mighty effort," Daley said.

"Queensland are a great team. They have been a great team for a number of years. It's going to be a big ask for us."

"It's going to be a massive challenge. We know that Queensland are a very good team and we need to go to a new level above what we did last year."