NSW legend Ray Price has buried the hatchet with playmaker Mitchell Pearce after a chance meeting in Blues camp during the week.
Captain Boyd Cordner has revealed how there were a few awkward moments when he and other members of the Blues staff were having lunch with the Parramatta great when Pearce walked in.
Before coach Laurie Daley recalled Pearce as NSW halfback, Price savaged the Sydney Roosters’ No.7 during an interview in which he said he had worn out his welcome in the sky blue jersey.
However Cordner said there was no lingering tension and Roosters teammate Pearce had moved on.
“It was a bit funny, we were at lunch and Pearcey walked in,” Cordner said.
“He said hello and Ray goes ‘I’m not here to pester you’. It was funny.”
Cordner said there was no ill feeling between Price and Pearce or his NSW teammates.
“That’s his opinion and he’s one of the greats of the game, so he’s entitled to say that,” Cordner said.
“I don’t know if Pearcey took it with a grain of salt but he’s professional and he’s confident in his form and ability at the moment and that he deserves to be here.”
Pearce has a forgettable record of four wins from 15 Origin games for NSW and has failed to win a series in his six attempts.
The 28-year-old has looked like a new player this year and is thriving under the tutelage of NSW great and Roosters adviser Andrew Johns.
Cordner said there had been a noticeable change in Pearce’s game, particularly in the big moments which included kicking a field-goal in golden point to beat St George Illawarra on Anzac Day.
“I know how much respect Pearcey has for Joey after seeing their relationship and them working together,” Cordner said.
“Pearcey has always been a great player but there’s been things that are missing for him to take that next step.
“I think he’s learnt that and that’s got a lot to do with him working closely with Joey.”