Put us to the test – Thurston

Co-captain Johnathan Thurston says this week’s pre-season camp in Cairns could help his Toyota Cowboys team be mentally tougher in season 2015.

The North Queensland squad will travel by bus from Townsville to Cairns after training on Thursday morning, before spending four nights “roughing it” in what should be uncomfortable hot and humid conditions.

There’ll be a number of physical challenges thrown in to make the experience even tougher.

“As a playing group we have to put ourselves under uncomfortable positions and situations and see how we react to it,” JT said.

“There were instances throughout the year that we probably didn’t react too well to, refereeing decisions and things like that.

“If this makes us mentally tougher, the boys should get a lot out of it, that will help us in what we’re trying to achieve next year.”

JT told the media in Townsville today that he hadn’t spoken to the coaching staff about his pre-season playing schedule, but confirmed the All Stars game on 13 February “was one I want to compete in”.

He’s also putting his hand up for selection in the NRL Auckland Nines squad that will be shooting for back-to-back victories.

“I’m definitely going across so hopefully I can take my boots with me as well,” JT said.

To kick off their Cairns camp, the Cowboys will run a junior clinic at the Cairns JRL grounds in Mann Street on Thursday from 4pm.

There will be a signing session for the general public from 4.45pm to 5.30pm.