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NRL: Fittler confirms Tedesco role

New South Wales coach Brad Fittler has confirmed James Tedesco will keep the fullback jersey when the State of Origin series gets underway later this year.

The Blues are out to retain State of Origin in 2022 following their 2-1 success last year and all being well Tedesco will be the man to lead them.

Papenhuyzen stakes claim

Melbourne Storm fullback Ryan Papenhuyzen has been a revelation so far this season and there have been calls for him to take the No.1 jersey from Tedesco.

However unless something happens to the Sydney Roosters ace that will not be happening. Tedesco himself has been impressing and Fittler says his captain will keep the armband and keep the jersey.

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“James Tedesco is our captain, so if he's fit and healthy, he will be our fullback,” Fittler told Channel Nine’s Sunday Footy Show.

Even so Fittler does accept that Papenhuyzen, who has scored 10 tries already this season, is one of the most dangerous players in the NRL.

“He has the ability to turn opportunities all over the field, not just off the dummy half, but off wingers, off centres, he creates tries,” Fittler added. “If you’re getting good ball, then Ryan Papenhuyzen is the most dangerous person in the competition.”

Bench utility

It looks as though Papenhuyzen could fill the bench utility role for New South Wales have played it for Melbourne Storm in the past.

“The biggest thing he (Papenhuyzen) has on his side is that he played so long in the No.14 role, and look we’ve got to decide on that,” Fittler said. “He has the ability to play a few positions.”

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