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The NYC Cowboys will have six debutants in their squad of 17 for the season-opening clash with the Canberra Raiders at 1300SMILES Stadium this evening.

It will be a completely new-look halves pairing for North Queensland with Delayne Ashby, who came to the Cowboys from the Sydney Roosters in the off-season, joining up with James Redman who is in his first year as an NYC squad member.

A junior with the Nightcliff Dragons in the Darwin competition, Redman played senior football in Townsville last year with the Centrals Tigers.

The other run-on first gamers are hooker Josh Chudleigh from the Bungendore Tigers in Canberra and winger Scott Schulte, a junior with the Sarina Crocodiles.

The new faces of the bench are Fijian forward Viliame Kikau, who has played in each of the Cowboys’ pre-season trials and 18-year-old rookie Bill Cullen from the Calliope Roosters.

After playing almost exclusively in the No.6 jersey in 2013, Alex Grant has been named at fullback while NRL squad member Patrick Kaufusi will start at prop.

Kick off is at 5.45pm.

NYC Cowboys: 1 Alex Grant, 2 Hayden Crowley, 3 Lenny Magey, 4 Samsen O’Neill, 19 Scott Schulte, 6 James Redman, 7 Delayne Ashby, 8 Patrick Kaufusi, 9 Josh Chudleigh, 10 David Munro, 11 Jack Kelleher (c), 12 Corey Jensen, 13 Andrew Niemoeller. Interchange: 14 Dan Clarke, 15 Kieran Quabba, 16 Bill Cullen, 17 Viliame Kikau.

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.