"They are a better defensive team through the middle".
His fantastic display was typified following his try, which wrapped up the game, with Fifita strolling back to the bench like a peacock, silencing the usually parochial Brisbane crowd.
Gagai said achieving such improvement comes down to "everything", rather than just studying video of opposite centre-wing pairing Jarryd Hayne and Brett Morris.
"It comes down to diet, preparation, sleep, how you train, video sessions and then putting it into practice", he said.
"There is a bit of arrogance and cockiness you've got to take into a game but at the same time you block the nerves away and get on with it".
The only critic of Dane Gagai's Origin I performance might well be the Maroons winger himself - and he has overhauled his preparation to get it right tomorrow night. In Origins in the past, where NSW has done well against Billy is they've got down there on Billy - the kick-chase has been awesome - and really got into [him].
"I kind of just avoid eating soup because I know I am going to eat a whole heap of bread with it".
Concerns about Gagai's defence are believed to have played a part in the decision but the 26-year-old dismissed that as "just talk". "I suppose it's going to be different for game two".
In the firing line has been Queensland debutant Tim Glasby who was described by a Sydney newspaper as a "nobody".
"We are still in the ball game, we are confident we will put in a good performance that will keep us alive". "If I had all that negative stuff, I would be thriving off it and proving to everyone I am someone", he said.
Caught: NSW captain Boyd Cordner is tackles by the Maroons.
Hancock went on to play 14 Origins from 1989-96, scoring five tries and celebrating in two series victories.
This, accompanied with the return of Maroons legends Billy Slater and Johnathan Thurston, means Queensland may have a better chance.
While there can be no complaints about the standard of Origin I, this series has been timid from a promotional sense. Just ref the game the same as they did in the first game.
While we can't forecast a Blues win, hopefully the weather forecast won't mess with the game too much. I'd never won at Suncorp Stadium in my Origin career.
"They've got more points in them this time around, so we've got to be able to come up with points".