NRL Press Conference: Raiders vs. Knights

Even with the threat of his career ending before he had a chance to show the rugby league world his true potential, Kalyn Ponga never doubted his ability to make a State of Origin comeback one day.

“It was the reality for a bit there,” the Maroons star said, referring to the time when his battles with concussions left him facing retirement.

But I’ve never really doubted myself. I always wanted to be back in this arena, and I’m never going to close the door to it.

Queensland recalled Ponga on Monday as coach Billy Slater made key changes to the Maroons side for the State of Origin series decider on July 17.

It is a remarkable turnaround for the Newcastle Livewire, who was forced to withdraw from the 2023 series as the enormity of his plight with concussions set in.

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