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North Queensland forward Gavin Cooper says the focus from the just-completed pre-season will be what the Toyota Cowboys will also be concentrating on in round one against Canberra at 1300SMILES Stadium on Saturday night.

“It’s all about defence,” the back-rower said.

“If we can stop tries at this time of year, our attack will roll on.

“We’ve got to continue on from what we’ve done in the trials.

“We’ve had a couple of good wins, but they don’t count for two points on the board.”

Coach Paul Green will name his round one squad tomorrow afternoon with Cooper set to return after being rested from the last trial against the Gold Coast Titans in Toowoomba after starring in the NRL Auckland Nines win.

He was one of four Cowboys named in the team of the tournament.

“Everyone’s confidence is high after the last month of footy and I think we’ll take that into round one,” Cooper said.

“As Tatey likes to say, we’re playing for keeps now.

"There’s two points to be played for every weekend now and the boys are going to be pumped.”

After having the weekend off following a five-day camp on the Gold Coast, the Cowboys started their training week with a weights session on Monday afternoon.

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.