Statistics don’t come close to highlighting John Asiata’s importance to the North Queensland Toyota Cowboys in 2019.
From starting the year as one of the club’s in-form middle forwards to playing the majority of the second half of the season in the halves, Asiata’s versatility was an essential asset for Cowboys head coach Paul Green.
The 26-year-old started eight games from the interchange and four at lock, but it was his eight games at five-eighth which were arguably of most importance to the Cowboys.
With Te Maire Martin, Jake Clifford and Michael Morgan all battling injuries at different points in the season, Green called upon Asiata to play in the halves, but he performed far superior than a mere fill-in.
Asiata played a major hand in a number of Cowboys victories, including the Round 8 triumph over the Titans and the huge upset of the Roosters in Round 17.
The super-utility was also just one of four Cowboys to appear in all 24 games in 2019.
Try assists: 2
Average run metres: 74
Average tackles: 22