NORTH QUEENSLAND TOYOTA COWBOYS v MELBOURNE STORM
Round 4, 2015 NRL Telstra Premiership
6pm (Qld), Monday 30 March, 1300SMILES Stadium
Live updates: twitter.com/nthqldcowboys
Referees: Ben Cummins, Henry Perenara
Touch judges: Russell Turner, Adam Gee
Video referees: Jared Maxwell, Steve Folkes
Broadcast: Fox Sports 1; 4TOFM, NRL Digital Pass
Times: Gates open 5pm
NYC: Cowboys v Storm – 3pm, Saturday 28 March, Jack Manski Oval, Townsville
Cowboys: 1. Lachlan Coote 2. Matthew Wright 3. Tautau Moga 4. Kane Linnett 5. Antonio Winterstein 6. Michael Morgan 7. Johnathan Thurston 8. Matt Scott 9. Rory Kostjasyn 10. James Tamou 11. Gavin Cooper 12. Ethan Lowe 13. Jason Taumalolo. Interchange: 14. Jake Granville 15. Kelepi Tanginoa 16. Scott Bolton 17. Ben Hannant 18. John Asiata.
Storm: 1. Billy Slater 2. Young Tonumaipea 3. Will Chambers 4. Kurt Mann 5. Marika Koroibete 6. Blake Green 7. Cooper Cronk 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Cameron Smith (c) 10. Jordan McLean 11. Kevin Proctor 12. Tahu Harris 13. Dale Finucane. Interchange: 14. Ryan Hinchcliffe 15. Tim Glasby 16. Dayne Weston 17. Felise Kaufusi 18. Tom Learoyd-Lahrs 19. Hymel Hunt.
- The Cowboys put on 16 points in the second half against the Broncos in round 3.
- Johnathan Thurston is leading the competition for the most turnover tackles with 6.
- A win for the Storm would see Cameron Smith notch up his 200th victory as captain, making him one of five to achieve this milestone (Darren Lockyer, Terry Lamb, Brad Fittler, Cliff Lyons).
- Lachlan Coote ran for 109m in his 13 hit-ups and made two tackle busts and one linebreak assist for his Cowboys debut in round 2.
- Last time North Queensland played the Storm (round 12, 2014), Kane Linnett, Antonio Winterstein, Johnathan Thurston and Michael Morgan all scored in the 22-0 drubbing.
- Ethan Lowe has been averaging 36 tackles a match.
Cowboys: There’ll be great interest in the battle of the number 7s, with Origin teammates Johnathan Thurston and Cooper Cronk pulling the strings for both of their sides. The Cowboys co-captain has had limited space to work with so far this season, and will be out to exploit any holes in the Storm defence with his brilliance close to the line.
Storm: It’s hard to go past the “big 3” in the Storm lineup, but so far this season Melbourne’s front row has been on fire, with Jesse Bromwich and Jordan McLean leading the way with the Storm currently fifth on the ladder with two wins and a loss. Last week against the Sharks, Storm second-rower Tohu Harris in his 59 minutes made 27 tackles; 16 hit-ups for 159 metres; 7 tackle busts; 2 line-breaks and scored two tries.
COACH’S LAST WORDS:
Cowboys coach Paul Green: “It’s about reminding them of the good stuff they can do and being prepared to fight a little bit harder when the game’s on the line and getting back to the things we do best.”