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A Queensland derby will be part of the round three Telstra Premiership restart with the Titans looking for their first win of the season against the Cowboys.

North Queensland split their opening two matches of the season before the hiatus brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Cowboys have a relatively settled squad while rookie coach Justin Holbrook has had to deal with plenty of upheaval in the past couple of months, with centre Kallum Watkins returning to the UK and fullback AJ Brimson ruled out indefinitely with a back problem.

The Rundown

Team news

Cowboys: The Cowboys will start 1-17 after Tom Gilbert and Tom Opacic were the last two dropped from the reserves list. Michael Morgan (shoulder, round seven) and Gavin Cooper (calf) are out with Jake Clifford at halfback and Mitchell Dunn in the second row. Shane Wright joins the interchange. Corey Jensen and Reuben Cotter dropped off the extended bench 24 hours before kick-off. The Cowboys have won their past nine games against the Titans. 

Titans: Jonus Pearson and Brian Kelly will start in the backline with Tyrone Roberts (ankle) and Anthony Don (knee) dropping out of the side. The Titans have reshuffled their backline with Tyrone Peachey and Dale Copley at centre, Phillip Sami on the wing and Jamal Fogarty debuting at halfback and Ash Taylor switching to five-eighth. Bryce Cartwright and Mitch Rein were dropped from the squad an hour before kick-off. The Titans have not won in Townsville since 2012.