Blake Ferguson never gave up on one of the most unlikely State of Origin recalls, despite conceding only six months ago he "disrespected" the man who handed him a NSW lifeline.
The 29-year-old was all smiles as he joined the Blues for their trek across the continent to Perth, resurrecting an Origin career which appeared dead and buried after he was accused of taking part in a drinking session with Josh Dugan five days before the 2017 series decider.
His hopes appeared even more forlorn when for personal reasons he skipped NSW's pre-season camp for Blues hopefuls over summer without telling coach Brad Fittler.
But Ferguson's career renaissance with last year's premiers the Roosters and outstanding start to life at the Eels prompted a recall from Fittler, who has turned to older heads in a bid to save the series.
Ferguson phoned Fittler shortly after the start of the NRL season to clear the air over his summer no-show, a conversation which no doubt helped his cause for a Blues comeback.
"I called him because I missed the camp and I felt like I disrespected him with that," Ferguson said. "I got onto [manager] Sam [Ayoub] to get his number and give him a buzz. We ended up touching base.
I called him because I missed the camp and I felt like I disrespected him with that.
"I was actually pretty nervous. If anyone knows me I dont like letting anyone down – and I did with that. I had my own personal reasons why I didnt go to that. Its history now. Im here and Ive got a job. He showed faith in me to come here and do a job for him."
While Dugan hasn't yet managed to return to the NSW fold, Ferguson still maintains the reaction to their social afternoon two years ago was overblown. And only now will he get the chRead More – Source