COWBOYS assistant coach Terry Matterson won't be in the least bit surprised if young forward Tariq Sims is named in the New South Wales side for game one of this year's State Of Origin series.
The 22-year-old, who grew up in the NSW country town of Gerringong but made his senior debut in Queensland, has pledged his allegiance to the Blues.
And selectors could not have missed his outstanding contribution off the bench for Country Origin against City at Mudgee on Sunday, crossing for two tries and playing with plenty of his renowned enthusiasm.
Matterson, named as one of the Broncos best 20 players in the club's history in 2007, also played Origin for New South Wales and said Sims had all the attributes to shine on the biggest stage.
"The bigger the game the better he plays," Matterson, who joined the Cowboys this year after coaching in the English Super League for seven years, said.
"Tariq likes to have the ball, and he loves defending. He's just made up of raw aggression ... he's also good on his feet."
Matterson said the youngster, who was off the scene for seven months after breaking his leg against Cronulla in round 25 last year, would have every chance to put his case for Origin selection in the coming weeks.
"We've been bringing him along slowly and I'd like to think he's capable of starting ... and playing 80 minutes," Matterson said.
"You want to see these sort of players playing grand finals, origin and tests. That's all ahead of him."