Cowboys INSIDER

Dog of the people

It was a busy week for Cowboys mascot Bluey, with the iconic cattle dog attending the inaugural Maroon Festival at Brisbane’s South Bank ahead of Wednesday’s State of Origin opener. Thousands attended the free event, with Bluey linking up with Blade from the Titans and the Broncos’ Buck to mingle with the fans. Getting amongst the festival fun, the mascot triumvirate high-fived the crowd, with one well-placed source revealing to Insider that Bluey received by far the largest cheers on the day. The tireless blue heeler topped his week off with revving up the crowd and posing for pics on game day.  

Heartland calling

Off the field, members of the Cowboys team have been flat-out building partnerships with the wider community, including significant work in the league heartland of Papua New Guinea. The club has a long-standing major partnership with PNG-based rice producer Trukai, who are a playing shorts sponsor for the Cowboys NRL team. Cowboys General Manager - Commercial Jeff Reibel said the opportunities for the club to build on existing partnerships – and the potential to create new ones – was limitless.

“The direct flights now available from Townsville to Port Moresby open up numerous opportunities in terms of sponsorships, community initiatives, and just the very fact that it's easier for PNG fans and members to get here for home games,” Reibel said. 

“Add to that the huge interest in the PNG Hunters playing in the Queensland Cup against the Cowboys’ three feeder teams, and you can see and feel the level of excitement being generated.”

Reibel has already visited PNG once this year and will return next week as the club looks to strengthen ties and explore new opportunities.

Repping it

Although Queensland were well beaten in their Under-20 curtain-raiser versus New South Wales on Wednesday, our three representatives – Corey Horsburgh, Mitch Dunn and Hiale Roycroft – all did their state proud. Horsburgh scored the Maroons’ opening try, while Dunn – a five-eighth at club level but playing as a forward for his state - and Roycroft were solid. The performance came at a cost for Roycroft, however, the back-rower ruled out for at least six weeks after sustaining a leg injury in the rep match.

Turn it up

Members and fans who enjoyed John Asiata's dulcet tones on last year's player Christmas video are in for a treat with the club's latest membership campaign. Asiata's talented pipes feature in the fun mid-season membership 'pledge or sledge' – check it out at cowboys.midyearmembership.com.au

Return fire

There were a few familiar faces back in Cowboys country this weekend for the Round 13 action against the Gold Coast. Titans head coach Neil Henry was a former assistant and head coach at the Cowboys, while his Titans assistant Terry Matterson also worked under him at the Cowboys, as did Gold Coast strength and conditioning coach Sean Edwards. 

Girl power

Congratulations to Cowboys strength and conditioning coach Anthony Wood and his wife Jenna who have welcomed their first child, daughter Lyla Rae, into the world last Friday. Mum and baby are doing well.

Celebrity head

Students of Healy State School and Dunwich State School kept Cowboys legend Matt Bowen on his toes during visits for the Try for 5! program this week. Things were kept interesting with a fun game of celebrity heads which saw the club record holder sided with the likes of Katy Perry, much to the delight of the young fans!