2013 NRL Season Preview: North Queensland Cowboys

By Brady Foray Writers

If it wasn’t for dubious refereeing in the second week of finals last season then who knows where the Cowboys would’ve ended up. 2012 was a year where the Cowboys finally showed some season-to-season consistency after reaching the finals for the second-straight time. Not to be outdone, the Cowboys have the potential to make it a treble of finals appearances in 2013.

2012 was the year of James Tamou at the Cowboys. Their roster this season is relatively unchanged barring the losses of hooker duo Aaron Payne (retired) and James Segeyaro (Penrith). Moving north this season (or south, depending on who you talking about) is Rory Kostjasyn (Storm), young hopeful Curtis Rona (Roosters), English international Scott Moore (Huddersfield) and Clint Greenshields who returns to the NRL after six seasons at the Catalans.

You talk about underdogs or dark horses in a competition. Some may say Cronulla, Newcastle and Raiders have this tag going into season 2013. For us, at the Brady Foray, we believe the Cowboys are deserving holders. Look at their squad, their experience and the combinations. 2013 could be the year of the Cowboy.

Signings: Rory Kostjasyn (Storm), Curtis Rona (Roosters), Clint Greenshields (Catalans), Scott Moore (Huddersfield)

Departures: James Segeyaro (Panthers), Cory Paterson (Hull KR), Aaron Payne (Retired), Moses Pangai (Panthers), Dane Hogan (Easts Tigers), Luke Harlen (Released), Ben Jones (Roosters)

Key to Success:

Most teams in the NRL have one player they are certainly better off with than without. For North Queensland this player and thus the teams’ key to success is Queensland and Australian five-eighth Johnathan Thurston. 79 tackle-breaks, 11 line-breaks and 24 try assists sums up his class. Thurston is the lynchpin to the Cowboys 2013 premiership winning hopes

Player to Watch:

With Payne retiring and Segeyaro moving to the Panthers, the Cowboys were left with a void to fill in at hooker. Scott Moore, who debuted in the Super League at 16, has been touted as this man. A Super League journeyman, Moore was named Hooker of Year in 2009. If he keeps his rumoured attitude in check then he shall be quite the find for the Cowboys this season.

Erratic Eddy says:

“Clint Greenshields returns to the NRL for the Cowboys this season after a long stint in France. Let’s hope he doesn’t repeat last year’s efforts at the Catalans when he went on a Twitter rant about how a referee was a ‘knob’. He was only suspended for a couple of days by the Catalans but imagine if he had done it in Australia. He would’ve copped weeks.”

Strongest 17: 1-Matthew Bowen 2-Ashley Graham 3- Brent Tate 4- Kane Linnett 5-Antonio Winterstein 6- Jonathan Thurston (C) 7-Michael Morgan 8- Matthew Scott (C) 9-Scott Moore 10-James Tamou 11-Tariq Sims 12- Gavin Cooper 13- Dallas Johnson Interchange: 14- Rory Kostjasyn 15- Jason Taumalolo 16- Ashton Sims 17Glen Hall. 18th Man: Scott Bolton.

Predicted Position: 4th

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