ARGUABLY the fiercest contest in world rugby league – the State of Origin between Queensland and New South Wales – kicked off today in Brisbane.

We won’t spoil it for anyone by giving you the score – instead we have concocted our own State of Origin side made up players who have featured for either the Maroons or Blues but also played or coached at Saints.

1. Mick Potter. The Saints coach from 2009-10, played full back for New South Wales in his Canterbury Bulldogs days.

St Helens Star:

2. Darren Albert. The flying wing, who graced the Saints flanks from 2002-05, represented the Blues in 1999.

St Helens Star:

3. Matt Gidley. The cultured and creative Newcastle Knight, who replaced Jamie Lyon from 2007-10, played 11 times for the Blues where he gave them the benefit of his flick pass.

St Helens Star:

4. Mal Meninga. What can you say about the man mountain who led Saints out of the trophy wilderness in a 31-game spell in 1984-5? A veteran of 13 Origin series, scoring 161 points in 32 games for the Maroons, Meninga went on to coach the state.

5. Michael O’Connor. Stay at Saints culminated in the 1989 Cup defeat by Wigan, but in seven series the NSW wing scored 129 points from 19 appearances.

St Helens Star:

6. Jamie Lyon. The star centre of 2005-06, donned the Blues jersey 10 times. Having to play him at six here given the lack of available halves.

7. Alan Wilson. Desperation means we have to feature the goalkicking back row or loose forward in a makeshift seven role. Wilson was Daniel Anderson’s assistant during the invincible year of 2006.

8. Pat Jarvis. Offloading prop guested for Saints in 1986-7, and represented NSW eight times in three Origin series.

St Helens Star:

9. Royce Simmons. The Saints coach of 2011-12, played 10 times for the Blues, starting in 1984.

10. David Fairleigh. One of the most popular Australians ever to don the red vee, Fairleigh made his Origin debut in 1991 – going on to feature 10 times for the Blues.

St Helens Star:

11. Darren Smith. Played at Saints during 2003, the second row played 22 times for Queensland from 1992.

12. Chris Flannery. The versatile back row joined midway through 2007 – and he played 10 times for the Maroons after making his debut in 2002.

13. Paul Vautin. Another member of that 1988-9, Vautin played 22 times for the Maroons after making his Origin debut in 1982.

Bench: Queensland’s Brett French was a speedy centre in 1985-6, Josh Perry’s biggest claim was punching Ben Flower and getting a card, and then getting collared for the naked run down Prescot Road, but he played Origin for NSW three times, Ross Conlon was a goalkicking wing in 1985-6, and played three times for the Blues in 1984, and prop Anthony Lafranchi played four times for NSW after debuting in 2008.