David Shillington
David Shillington Cade Mooneycm

'ARL must act quickly on Kasiano'

MAROONS prop David Shillington has called on the ARL Commission to act quickly on the Origin eligibility controversy that could soon see giant Bulldogs front-rower Sam Kasiano represent Queensland despite being born in New Zealand.

Under the existing rules, Kasiano could be selected for Origin III because he has not yet been picked for his native country.

While he reportedly pledged his allegiance to New Zealand earlier this year, Kasiano recently declared he wanted a Maroon jersey after playing for Norths Devils Colts in Brisbane in 2009.

Kasiano would be a more than handy selection for Queensland, with club teammate Josh Reynolds labelling his short passing game "unbelievable" after Canterbury's 28-20 win over the Dragons last Friday night.

Dave Taylor's form has also been heavily questioned after his quiet performance in Game II, potentially opening the door for Kasiano.

Raiders captain Shillington would certainly not object to playing alongside the big Bulldog at Origin level, but said he would like to see the series go back to being a battle between players either born in Queensland or NSW.

"Someone needs to sort it out," Shillington said. "We don't want the State of Origin to lose its significance, emotion and passion.

"We can't have someone from New Zealand playing for Queensland or vice versa; it does take away from the event that it is."

One person who like to see Slammin' Sam get his chance on the big stage is Bulldogs teammate and Queensland's 18th man for Game II, Ben Barba.

"It's his choice, I'm hoping he picks Queensland," he said. "I had a chat to him and he said he wants to play for Queensland and I'm hoping he gets his chance."

Shillington said suggestions Origin II was one of the most brutal on record were close to the mark.

"I copped a few more high shots that usual, and I let a few slide," he said. "They had their backs to the wall and responded very well.

"They were very aggressive with their line speed and they whacked their shoulders into us.

"We don't need to change too much, just our execution with the ball."

Shillington, who will be 29 on Sunday, said lining up against the Cowboys' representative props Matt Scott and James Tamou this Saturday night at Dairy Farmers Stadium will be another fierce challenge

"I've played alongside both those guys and they're very good - they're up there with the best props in the competition and it'll be a great test for us," he said

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