Centre Kane Linnett has been added to the North Queensland Toyota Cowboys’ squad for Saturday night’s historic pre-season trial against Townsville Blackhawks at Jack Manski Oval in Townsville.
It will be the first on-field action of 2015 for Linnett who has missed just a handful of NRL games since joining the Cowboys at the start of the 2012 season.
He will slot straight into the starting lineup, with Javid Bowen moving to the wing and Zac Santo dropping back to the interchange bench in place of NYC squad member Akeripa Tia Kilifi.
Linnett’s inclusion means there will be 10 Cowboys with NRL experience in the 22-man squad for North Queensland’s first match against the Intrust Super Cup’s newcomers, who are based next door to 1300SMILES Stadium.
Scott Bolton will make his comeback from shoulder reconstruction surgery a week ahead of schedule while Lachlan Coote and Cameron King will back up from last weekend’s 18-6 trial victory against Brisbane in Mackay – their first on-field action since suffering ACL injuries last year.
The squad features seven Cowboys still eligible for the NYC under-20s, including second-rower Coen Hess and front-rower Braden Uele who came off the bench in the Broncos trial.
Train and triallists Cameron Cullen and Tom Humble will be the starting halves pairing after also seeing game time in the second half against Brisbane, while 2014 NYC Player of the Year Josh Chudleigh will play his first minutes as a member of the Cowboys’ NRL squad.
Cowboys NRL assistant coach David Furner will coach North Queensland this weekend.
Saturday night’s match kicks off at 6pm with admission free.
COWBOYS SQUAD: 1 Lachlan Coote, 2 Kyle Feldt, 3 Kane Linnett, 4 Hezron Murgha, 5 Javid Bowen, 6 Cameron Cullen, 7 Tom Humble, 8 Scott Bolton, 9 Cameron King, 10 Sam Hoare, 11 Ben Spina, 12 Coen Hess, 13 John Asiata. Interchange: 14 Josh Chudleigh, 15 Zac Santo, 16 Viliame Kikau, 17 Patrick Kaufusi, 18 Braden Uele, 19 Conor Carey, 20 Cooper Bambling, 21 David Munro, 22 Andrew Niemoeller.