“I wouldn’t be in this situation if I didn’t think I was [going to be fit] for Sunday, it’s all going well so far,” Slater told media on Wednesday.”I understand what it takes to play a game in an Origin, I’m pretty confident I’ll be right on Sunday.”Slater is set to play his 30th State of Origin match when Queensland face New South Wales on Sunday with the Blues looking to lock up a series win at home following a 22-12 victory in Melbourne in game one.”We’ve got a challenge in front of us, we’ve got to go down to Sydney, it won’t be easy,” he said.”We definitely think we can improve on our performance and I’m looking forward to the challenge.”Slater’s likely successor at fullback, Newcastle Knights star Kalyn Ponga, has joined the Queensland squad as the Maroons’ bench utility for game two and Slater said he’d be happy to allow Ponga to play at the back if coach Kevin Walters’ game plan warranted it.”I think Kalyn is going to play multiple positions, fullback could possibly be one of them, I’m not too sure but he’s an exciting player and I’m sure he’ll do a great job,” he said.”I’d be happy to move around, I’ll do what’s best for the team.””I’m sure Kevvie’s got a plan in his head. I haven’t spoken to Kev about his plans with Kalyn just yet but he’s certainly going to be a great attribute coming on the field for us when the Blues are a little bit tired.”
A Battle Ground man was sentenced Monday to more than 46 years in prison for bashing his then-girlfriend and best friend in their heads with a hammer when he found them in bed together.A Clark County jury on July 7 found Marcus Morrison, 31, guilty of two counts of first-degree attempted murder with egregious lack of remorse.His sentence was unusual in that Morrison received consecutive sentences for each count from Superior Court Judge Robert Lewis.“Normally, there is a dead body or two … even for 30 years,” said Morrison’s attorney, Jeff Sowder.Deputy Prosecutor Luka Vitasovic said state law provides for consecutive sentences when a defendant has been convicted of two “serious violent offenses.”“The presumption is sentences are concurrent in Superior Court unless you have two serious violent offenses, in which case the sentences are consecutive,” Vitasovic said.Vitasovic on Monday requested what is known as an exceptional sentence of 50 years. An exceptional sentence is one that is outside the state’s formulaic standard sentencing range and is allowed when a jury finds certain aggravating circumstances, such as an egregious lack of remorse. Lewis denied Vitasovic’s request for 50 years but sentenced Morrison to the maximum under the state standard range of 36 to 46 years.Sowder argued for the minimum of 36 years, saying the 46 years would be excessive.“This is a case I think was pitched as sort of the heat of passion,” Vitasovic said. “The state takes issue with that characterization.”He said Morrison and victim Rena Donnelly had been dating for only a couple of months and had broken up on the night of the attack.