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Footballers' Wives


Aug 5, 2004
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Footballers' Wives with KATE JACKA


STATE against state. Mate against mate. Wife against wife?

State of Origin has caused a split in the footballers' wives camp with Cowboys coach Graham Murray and second rower Luke O'Donnell both flying the flag for New South Wales.

Good friends Amanda Murray and Neil Henry's wife Kath will spend the next six or so weeks as sworn rivals as will the girlfriend contingent of Rudie Doyle (Matt Bowen), Lauren Moore (Matt Scott) and Tania Moscato (O'Donnell).

While Rudie and Lauren will be among the masses cheering the Maroons home, Tania will be decked in sky blue and, quite possibly, dodging makeshift missiles from passers-by.

For their own safety, Amanda and Tania will be watching Origin I from the comfort of the Murrays' living room.

"I think we'll stay away from the Queensland supporters," Tania said.

"We've both had a few offers to go and watch the game here and there.

"I was thinking about it but I thought 'no, I might just go somewhere where I'm safe'."

While Rudie won't be heading to the Murrays', she is still likely to be surrounded by Blues supporters as she watches her Matty from the comfort of Telstra Stadium, Sydney.

It will be Rudie's second live Origin experience, having watched Matty play Origin III in Brisbane last year.

The Maroons lost that one but Rudie has a good feeling about 2006.

"It's a young squad but I think something good's going to happen," she said.

"It's awesome (watching Matty play live).

"They (fans) go mad for him, it's great."

Rudie has been a mad Queensland supporter since she was a kid and her brother John played for the victorious Maroons in 2001 and 2002.

In contrast, Sydney product Tania conceded she hadn't been a big follower of Origin, but would be now.

"I'm very excited and it's very exciting for (Luke) too," she said.

"It's something he's always wanted to do so it's great that the time's come."

Switch in camps

SPEAKING of Origin, as we will be for weeks to come no doubt, Amanda Murray will be right behind the Blues tomorrow night but it hasn't always been that way.

Amanda is a Brisbane-born Queenslander and, until 2006, a Maroons supporter - particularly last season with their strong North Queensland Cowboys contingent.

Likewise, the Murrays' 12-year-old daughter Cara, who found it tough to understand why her dad couldn't be appointed Queensland coach instead.

But Amanda said she had no problems switching camps to support her hubby.

Maroons win Jack

AN allegiance shift has also occurred in the Henry household with Neil and Kath's son Jack, 12, pledging his support for Queensland in 2006.

Born in Canberra, Jack originally adopted NSW as his Origin team and has supported the Blues up until this season.

Queensland is his new team because of Cowboys fullback Matty Bowen ... oh, and his dad of course.