Cowboys INSIDER

Johnathan Thurston says he was in awe of fellow co-captain Matt Scott’s performance against Brisbane at 1300SMILES Stadium on Friday night. Not only did the Test and Origin prop score his third try of the season, he also produced a career best of 227 metres in attack, once again proving that he is the best front-rower in the game. “I haven’t seen a performance like that from a front-rower for a long time,” JT said. “He was just an animal through the middle third there. He was outstanding and Jimmy Tamou was great for us as well.”

JT has leapt to equal fourth on the Dally M Medal standings after picking up one point from judge Wally Lewis from Friday night’s win. JT now has nine points to be five behind the leader, Canterbury five-eighth Josh Reynolds. Matt Scott deservedly received the three points from round nine and is now on six points overall.

• Our stats leaders from Friday night were: most metres – Matt Scott (227m); most tackle breaks – Matt Scott (8); most linebreaks – Matt Scott (3); most tackles – Rory Kostjasyn (32); most try assists – Johnathan Thurston (2).

• Friday night was a first for a couple of reasons for Cameron King. Not only was it his first NRL match for the Cowboys, it was also the first time he’d played in an NRL win against Brisbane. As Cowboy No.244, he received his debut jersey from former Cowboy Paul Rauhihi at the pre-game lunch on Friday.

• Maybe this was the reason for Michael Morgan’s sensational night in attack and defence against the Broncos – he’s a big fan of Jai Waetford, who performed pre-match. Morgo said he had Jae’s second song “Get To Know You” stuck in his head all night.

• There’s great news for Hezron Murgha this week – his long period of rehabilitation following knee reconstruction surgery is over and he’ll return to the playing field for the Northern Pride in the Intrust Super Cup in Cairns this weekend.

• The post-match award winners from Friday’s tussles with Brisbane were: NRL player of the match – Matt Scott; NRL play of the day – Michael Morgan for his try-saving tackle on Matt Gillett; NYC player of the match – Viliame Kikau; NYC play of the day – Bill Cullen. The awards are presented at the Cowboys Leagues Club following each home game.

• There were some great stories told at last Thursday night’s Derby Dinner that focussed on the 10th anniversary of the Cowboys’ first appearance in the NRL finals. Among them, host Ken Sutcliffe from Nine’s Wide World of Sports, revealed he has a signed 1995 Cowboys jersey in his memorabilia collection at home in Mudgee. One of Ken’s first jobs was in TV in Townsville in the 1970s and he has fond memories of watching local footy at the Sports Reserve.

• The 2004 squad members were in the Cowboys’ victorious dressing room following the win against the Broncos. They joined in a raucous rendition of the team song, although a couple of them had forgotten a couple of the words since those great days 10 years ago.

• If you were watching the backplay in the lead-up to Rory Kostjasyn’s 79th minute try on Friday, you’d have seen Ashton Sims pleading for the hooker to pass him the ball on the inside. “Basher” is desperate to avoid a “nudie run” in 2014 after failing to score in 2013. His last try came almost two years ago – round 11 in 2012 against Penrith.

• Friday night’s crowd of 21,340 was the Cowboys’ biggest at home against the Broncos for two seasons. You have to go back to round 15 in 2012 to go close to challenging it: 20,367. 

Michael Morgan will be in the Hot FM Townsville studios with Ashton Sims on Tuesday morning. You can hear them on the Cliffo and Tianna breakfast show after 8am.

• It will be Brent Tate’s turn to produce a trickshot for the WIN News Locker Room cameras this week. Tune in on Wednesday night from 7pm to see what Tatey came up with.

• The winner of a signed 2014 Cowboys jersey from last Friday night's game day competition was Leonie Sorbello. There's another chance to win this Saturday night – details soon.

• To celebrate 100 games of Origin football, the Townsville Bulletin is publishing a special “Homegrown Heroes” poster series featuring North Queensland’s Origin legends. There’ll be one in the paper each day this week.