Utility Rory Kostjasyn will fill the large boots of injured star Michael Morgan when the North Queensland Toyota Cowboys host the Manly Sea Eagles in Round 16 National Rugby League action at 1300SMILES Stadium tonight.
With five-eighth Morgan out for three matches with a knee injury – sustained during Queensland’s series-clinching win in the second State of Origin on Wednesday – Kostjasyn comes into the starting side and will partner co-captain Johnathan Thurston in the halves.
Young forward Patrick Kaufusi comes into the 17 and will be joined on the interchange bench by John Asiata, Scott Bolton and Ben Hannant.
The third-placed Cowboys are coming off a bye and will be looking for their 10th win of the season, while the Sea Eagles have four wins from 14 matches to sit 14th on the NRL ladder.
Tonight’s game kicks off at 7pm.
COWBOYS: 1 Lachlan Coote, 2 Kyle Feldt, 3 Justin O’Neill, 4 Kane Linnett, 5 Antonio Winterstein, 14 Rory Kostjasyn, 7 Johnathan Thurston (c), 8 Matt Scott (c), 9 Jake Granville, 10 James Tamou, 11 Gavin Cooper, 12 Ethan Lowe, 13 Jason Taumalolo. Interchange: 15 John Asiata, 16 Scott Bolton, 17 Ben Hannant, 18 Patrick Kaufusi.