Aussie selectors may be ready to serve up Oates
TEENAGE terror Corey Oates and Fijian destroyer Semi Radradra could spearhead Mal Meninga's debut as Australian coach against New Zealand in Newcastle next month.
Radradra has declared, under the three-year residency rule, he wants to play for Australia and could get his wish.
Both wingers are known to figure strongly in Test selection talks as Meninga attempts to lift the Kangaroos back into the world number-one ranking currently held by the Kiwis.
After guiding Queensland to an unprecedented record eight successive State of Origin series wins, Meninga is set to be handed a new-look Australian side for the one-off Test at Hunter Stadium on May 6 with Brisbane's Darius Boyd favourite to take over Billy Slater's No.1 jumper and Greg Inglis remaining at left centre.
Oates, who hails from Biloela and played his junior football for Baralaba, could follow the path of former Brisbane Broncos winger Jharal Yow Yeh by playing for Australia before representing his state.
Following an outstanding 2015 season for Brisbane, in which he scored a try in the grand final, Oates started 2016 off in the same rich vein of form before suffering a shoulder injury.
The 192cm, 106kg powerhouse has scored more than 30 tries for Brisbane since making his debut off the bench in round 17 of 2013 against Melbourne.
If he proves his shoulder is fully recovered and he plays well for the next few weeks he could be handed a Test jumper at just 19 years of age - the same age as Yow Yeh when he debuted for his country.
Meninga, meanwhile, is understood to prefer recalling Boyd, who played his 17th Test in 2014, to replace the injured Slater.
If he performs well for the Kangaroos it's highly likely the Queensland selectors will follow the lead and play him in the No.1 jumper in the first Origin against NSW in Sydney on June 1.
The Australian selectors, meanwhile, are set to disappoint NSW fans by omitting Blues' skipper Paul Gallen from the Test side.
Gallen missed the opening five rounds of the NRL competition with a knee injury and would need to put in a few impressive games on such a limited preparation.
If Queensland plays Boyd or Greg Inglis at fullback in the first Origin game, they will break up the most lethal partnership in Origin history.
Since coming together on the left side in 2008, Queensland has won five of the past six Origin series.
Inglis (12) and Boyd (16) have contributed 28 tries and combined to win 13 of their 17 Origin games.
Queensland were initially looking at playing Inglis at fullback as they did when the Maroons belted NSW 52-6 in the third game last year, but are understood to now be favouring Boyd, who has had a great start to the year in the position for Brisbane.