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• There’s been a job switch and a couple of additions to the Cowboys’ football department for season 2014. Recruitment manager Adrian Thomson will now be an assistant coach to head coachPaul Green with a special focus each week during the season on those players lining up with our Intrust Super Cup affiliates Northern Pride and Mackay Cutters. Clint Zammit has returned to the club as recruitment manager while Josh Carius has joined North Queensland in the role of performance analyst. You can meet the new team here: 2014 Coaching Staff.

• James Tamou says his new “bushranger” look is here to stay for now even though his big, bushy beard isn’t very popular with his partner Britney. “I’m not sure how long I’ll keep it,” Jimmy said. “After a few sessions in the heat of the gym, I don’t know if it’s the best idea. It’s getting to me a bit. We’ll see how far into the season it gets.” The beard started when the Kangaroos front-rower first arrived in the cold weather of Manchester for the start of the World Cup last November. “Britney hates it but the baby loves it,” he said. “He tugs on it and has a good time with it.”

• Also staying long is Ashton Sims’s hair which is now a long way removed from his old “mohawk” look. He is adamant his longer locks will last longer than Jimmy’s big beard.

• With Scott Moore now back in England with the London Broncos, the Cowboys will take a 31-man squad into the 2014 NRL season – that’s four players less than last year. This should solve an issue that came up last year when the Cowboys had to send a couple of NRL squad members to local club football because there was already the maximum of six each at both the Cutters and Pride.

• The Cowboys have made the latest edition of the Northern Services Courier, a free newspaper delivered to the region’s Defence Force families – included are photos of our NRL squad’s team building morning at Lavarack Barracks prior to the Christmas-New Year break.

• This week’s birthday boy is PNG World Cup representative Ray Thompson, who will celebrate his 24th birthday on Monday. Happy birthday Ray!

• Game development officer Ryan Mahoney and NYC physiotherapist Jon Crawley will visit the Whitsunday Brahmans in Proserpine on Saturday to pass on some of their knowledge. Included in their talks will be advice on injury prevention and tips on how to attract and keep junior footballers.

• The latest edition of Rugby League Week is in newsagents and includes a double-page preview of the Cowboys’ season with a special focus on Ray Thompson.

• Congrats to our recently retired 202-game veteran and new NYC strength and conditioning coach Ash Graham and his wife Jane who are expecting their first child later this year.

• The Cowboys’ Twitter page now has moved through the 18,000 followers mark. You can find us @nthqldcowboys.

Acknowledgement of Country

North Queensland Cowboys respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.