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The Cowboys Development team, thanks to partner Hutchinson Builders, aims to grow the game of rugby league at all levels, with a particular focus on grassroots participation.

Our team travels throughout Queensland to run coaching clinics in primary and secondary schools and in junior and senior clubs.

They also convene and assist in the delivery of junior rugby league competitions throughout the north, such as the Aaron Payne Cup, Matthew Bowen 9's and school competitions.

Growing grassroots from creek to country

Play rugby league

Our team works closely with the NRL's Play Rugby League with operate with a focus on safety and good conduct to create the best on-field experience for all participants. 


The North Queensland Toyota Cowboys are proud to support North Queensland junior rugby league through their annual competitions.

Aaron Payne Cup

The Aaron Payne Cup is a secondary school competition for the top eight rugby league schools in North and Central Queensland.

The two highest-placed teams from this competition go on to compete in the GIO Cup (state finals).

This competition provides the participating schools with regular competition games and encourages continued involvement in rugby league at a higher level (state and national).

The Cowboys Challenge

The Cowboys Challenge involves central and north Queensland teams from school grades 9 - 10.

The objectives of this challenge are similar to the Aaron Payne Cup – it provides an opportunity for regular competition and encourages players to stay involved in rugby league and in future years progress through to the open competition.

Matthew Bowen Nines

Named in honour of life member and club legend Matthew Bowen, the annual Matthew Bowen Nines is open to all secondary schools in North Queensland and hosted by St Teresa’s College, Abergowrie.

The tournament is open to all secondary schools in North Queensland and was first contested in 2014.

The Nines include a maximum of 16 teams who play a round-robin competition to decide the final four teams, before playing the semi-finals and grand final. 2017 saw the competition move to two tiers to cater for all levels of competition.

Cowboys Schoolgirl Challenge

This is a fun day of rugby league focused on increasing participation in the sport among girls and is open to all secondary school students across North Queensland.


Liam Bartlett, Game Development Manager
North Queensland Toyota Cowboys
Tel: 0408 075 327 / 07 4773 0712