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• Johnathan Thurston entertained a big crowd by compiling a hard-hitting 21 for the Bulls Masters in their exhibition Twenty20 clash against a Charters Towers Invitation XI at the annual Goldfield Ashes on Australia Day. JT admits he was nervous walking out and had some early troubles getting the bowling away, but once he started to give himself a bit more room, he managed to dispatch a six and a couple of boundaries to be the Bulls’ second highest scorer behind Andrew Symonds (40). NQ head coach Paul Green contributed 11 off 11 balls but neither of our representatives had the chance to show their skills in the field with storms preventing the second innings from going ahead.

• Book in Wednesday 26 February as a night in front of the television – that’s when Fox Sports plan to screen the half-hour NRL preview show featuring our Cowboys. You’ll see the boys in action in the gym as well as hear from head coach Paul Green, co-captain Johnathan Thurston, the Sims brothersRay Thompson and new signings Lachlan Coote and Cameron King.

• There are a couple of Cowboys who like to change up the music in the gym during their weight sessions – Ant Mitchell decided to throw on an hour-long tribute to Michael Jackson recently, a big change from the previous session that featured some of Ashton Sims’s favourite heavy metal tunes.

• Assistant coach David Furner is now well settled in Townsville after buying a house following his move north from Canberra. He is loving the NQ lifestyle.

• Paul Green’s first Cowboys team is set to be announced on Tuesday – he’ll name a squad for the following Saturday’s opening pre-season trial against Brisbane at Dolphin Oval in Redcliffe.

• The Cowboys’ NRL Auckland Nines team will be heading down to the Team Welcome event in Aotea Square in Auckland on Friday 14 February. If you're in town, come along and meet the team from 12.15pm.

• The NYC Cowboys plan to take in some of the hospitality provided by the Innisfail Brothers Leagues Club when they head north (weather permitting) to play the Northern Pride in a pre-season trial on Saturday evening. The under-20s are making the trip by bus and will stop off at Brothers for lunch before continuing their journey to Cairns. When they hit the field, they’ll be wearing the Cowboys’ new away strip for the first time.

• Kangaroo Andrew Fifita’s brother Latu will play for the Pride for the first time in Saturday’s trial. Their 20-man squad also includes former Cowboys NYC forward Tom Hancock.

• Former Cowboy Tyson Martin has been named captain of the Mackay Cutters for their Intrust Super Cup premiership defence this year. "It is certainly a very big honour,” Martin said. “When I finished my time at the Cowboys I really hoped it would work out that I could return home and play full time for the Cutters. So far everything both on and off the field has worked out for me.”

• There’s a massive day of rugby league coming up on Saturday 15 February when the TDJRL grounds on Kern Brothers Drive in Kirwan host eight trial matches, including a Pride v Cutters clash that may feature some members of the Cowboys’ NRL squad. The first games will be at 2.15pm with the Pride-Cutters match at 5.30pm followed by Centrals Tigers v Wests Mackay at 7.15pm.

• Don’t forget that the Cowboys Community Day is on at the Townsville RSL Stadium on Saturday afternoon – it will be indoors and under cover, and a great wet weather activity for the family. The fun starts at 2pm and will run through to 4pm.

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.