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Kyle Laybutt’s inclusion for the injured Johnathan Thurston is the only change to Paul Green’s North Queensland Toyota Cowboys team to take on Penrith in Townsville this afternoon.

Thurston was ruled out for the remainder of the season this week after succumbing to a shoulder injury sustained in Wednesday's second State of Origin match.

The playmaking star will need surgery, opening the door for Laybutt, 21, to play his second NRL game after he debuted against the Melbourne Storm last weekend.

Thurston’s fellow Queensland Origin stars Michael Morgan, Gavin Cooper and Coen Hess will all line up today, as captain Cooper runs on for his 250th NRL game.

The match at 1300SMILES Smiles kicks off at 3pm.

COWBOYS: 1. Lachlan Coote, 2. Kyle Feldt, 3. Justin O’Neill, 4. Kane Linnett, 5. Antonio Winterstein, 6. Michael Morgan, 18. Kyle Laybutt, 8. John Asiata, 9. Jake Granville, 10. Scott Bolton, 11. Gavin Cooper (c), 12. Ethan Lowe, 13. Jason Taumalolo. Interchange: 14. Ben Hampton, 15. Coen Hess, 16. Shaun Fensom, 17. Corey Jensen.

PANTHERS: 1. Dylan Edwards, 2. Josh Mansour, 3. Dean Whare, 4. Waqa Blake, 5. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak, 6. Matt Moylan (c), 7. Nathan Cleary, 8. James Tamou, 9. Mitch Rein, 10. Reagan Campbell-Gillard, 11. Corey Harawira-Naera, 12. Isaah Yeo, 13. Trent Merrin, 14. Tyrone Peachey, 15. Leilani Latu, 16. Tim Browne, 17. Viliame Kikau. 

Acknowledgement of Country

North Queensland Cowboys respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.