MARYBOROUGH man Lance Stone will live the State of Origin fan's dream; rubbing shoulders with the great Cameron Smith, before watching the big game from the perfect seat.
The "dyed in the wool" Maroons fan beat more than 44,000 entrants of the PPQ competition to win an afternoon with Cameron Smith at Suncorp Stadium yesterday, before using the Golden State of Origin Ticket to see the game tonight.
Lance and his wife Theresa spent yesterday afternoon with the Queensland Skipper at Suncorp Stadium after the team's final training session before the second Origin game.
Lance said winning the unexpected trip helped him overcome "the black dog", and allow Theresa to take a trip down memory lane, as she taught Cameron at Marsden State High School.
Lance said over the past year, he had lost some family members and one of his closest friends.
"At 54 you expect those events to occur, but they get you thinking of your own mortality; in short I have been pretty depressed," Lance said.
After entering the Golden Ticket competition through social media, Lance received a call to say he had won two tickets to all three State of Origin games including travel and accommodation, and an afternoon with Cameron Smith.
"I haven't missed a game since the inception in 1980, some of my greatest memories of State of Origin were watching them with my father on our fishing trips to Fraser Island; it was a great opportunity to finally bond with Dad," he said.
The 2016 series and his Golden Ticket is now an opportunity to bond with his 13-year-old daughter and only child Molly.
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