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The North Queensland Toyota Cowboys under-20s will be pleased to get some footy back under their belts after a disrupted fortnight that included a postponed match, a monstrous cyclone and the imminent return of a strike weapon.

Unbeaten in 2017 so far, Aaron Payne’s young charges take on the South Sydney Rabbitohs at 1300SMILES Stadium this afternoon, arguably short of a run after their Round 4 match on the Gold Coast against the Titans was called off after the Cowboys’ flight south on match eve was cancelled. 

Plans for a solid week of training in lieu of the game were put on hold as Tropical Cyclone Debbie forced Cowboys HQ to shut down for a couple of days at the start of the week.

The team still got in some good prep, but they will need to be on their guard against a strong Bunnies team that Payne is wary of, despite the side having won just one of four matches this season.

“They’re a dangerous side and beat us twice last year, so we need to be ready,” Payne said.

The second-year mentor will take much the same side into the match as was named to play the Titans, with fullback Kalyn Ponga moving back into the team after a fortnight playing NRL.

The game kicks off at 4.50pm at 1300SMILES Stadium.