North Queensland Cowboys

Cowboys surge to claim derby rights over Broncos

Tries to returning winger Kyle Feldt, Reece Robson and Jeremiah Nanai within 18 minutes blew the game wide open in the second half after the Cowboys took a narrow two-point lead into the break after an absorbing opening. 

Brisbane clawed their way back in the final six minutes with two tries before Murray Taulagi got his second of the evening on fulltime. 

A dominant performance from Scott Drinkwater at fullback was among the highlights of the evening with the No.1 coming up with three try assists in the 14-point win.

Cowboys stun Sea Eagles with late comeback

Trailing 26-12 just seven minutes from fulltime, the Cowboys mounted a remarkable comeback as Reece Robson, Murray Taulagi and Valentine Holmes crossed in succession to shock the Sea Eagles.

The Cowboys did so after losing Queensland forward Reuben Cotter in the warm-up with a hamstring injury that has him in doubt for next weekend's Origin in Perth and they never really looked like winning until the dying stages.

Sea Eagles v Cowboys: DCE back at the helm; Cotter, Nanai return

Todd Payten's men have won five from seven away games in 2022 so a trip to Manly's spiritual home shouldn't faze them, although the loss of young gun Heilum Luki for the season presents a significant challenge after a relatively injury-free run to date.

The Sea Eagles have had their own setbacks with superstar Tom Trbojevic and workhorse Karl Lawton gone for the season but Des Hasler won't be making any excuses if his team misses out on finals for the second time in three years.

Cowboys v Dragons: Payten rests Origin stars; McGuire in for Sims

Sitting third on the ladder with a differential of +160, Todd Payten's men have set themselves up perfectly for the demanding State of Origin period, which saw them go in against the Titans without four of their stars but still win comfortably.

A win for the Dragons would serve notice they deserve to be mentioned in the 'contenders' conversation and put a spring in their step ahead of two home games at WIN Stadium against the Rabbitohs and Raiders.

Hammer blows: Tabuai-Fidow strikes twice as Cowboys take down Titans

Such is the Cowboys' composure in 2022 that the loss of Val Holmes, Reuben Cotter, Jeremiah Nanai and Tom Dearden was not enough to halt their momentum, racking up a ninth win of the season on the back of standout performances from Jason Taumalolo, Scott Drinkwater and Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow.

The Cowboys didn't have it all their own way early, the home side forcing two line dropouts courtesy of astute kicks by Toby Sexton and Brian Kelly, but Todd Payten's men held firm.

Titans v Cowboys: Tino, Fifita both out; Big four on Origin duty

North Queensland's flying start to 2022 has seen Val Holmes, Reuben Cotter, Jeremiah Nanai, Tom Dearden, Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow and Murray Taulagi all rewarded with Maroons selection while Gold Coast are without big guns Tino Fa'asuamaleaui (Origin) and David Fifita (knee).

 

The Titans have lost seven of their past eight, including Friday's inexplicable fadeout against the Broncos in which they led 24-4 after 50 minutes before conceding five tries in 21 minutes to be blown off the park.

Panthers shut out brave Cowboys

However, the Cowboys confirmed they are genuine contenders with a gutsy defensive effort in which they made 425 tackles compared to just 318 by the premiers..

Lock Reuben Cotter made 63 tackles on his own, while rookie sensation Jeremiah Nanai and hooker Reece Robson made 51 each.

All but two members of Penrith's starting line-up carried the ball for more than 100 metres, headed by prop James Fisher-Harris (220m) and fullback Dylan Edwards (240m).

Panthers v Cowboys: Premiers rolling along; Feldt, JT sidelined

The Panthers have dropped just one game all season and have back-to-back premierships firmly in their sights while the Cowboys have risen from the ashes of 2021 to give themselves a legitimate shot at the club's second title.

Todd Payten's men boast the third best attack in the NRL behind the Storm and Panthers but it's their steel in defence that is most pleasing the coach, conceding just 12 points per game compared to 31 per game in 2021.

Cowboys stun Storm to make it six straight

Four tries in 12 minutes just after half-time ensured the Cowboys would make it six victories on the trot - their best sequence since their premiership year in 2015 when they won a club record 11 straight.

The Cowboys made the perfect start when Tom Gilbert produced a superb solo try from 30 metres out in the 11th minute after the Storm had opted for a short dropout.

Gilbert took the ball on the full before beating Marion Seve and Harry Grant and taking Nick Meaney over the line with him for just the second try of his career.

Cowboys v Storm: Same 17 for Payten; Hughes' late withdrawal

With Chad Townsend and Tom Dearden clicking in the halves, Murray Taulagi and Val Holmes on fire out wide, and Reuben Cotter playing out of his skin up front, North Queensland look every bit a premiership contender - a remarkable turnaround for a side that finished 15th in 2021.

The Storm did it tough without Ryan Papenhuyzen and Jahrome Hughes against the Panthers but Craig Bellamy's men rarely put two below-par performances back-to-back so Todd Payten's men need to be on high alert.