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Five things you need to know: Round 21 v Eels

The North Queensland Toyota Cowboys host the Parramatta Eels at Queensland Country Bank Stadium on Saturday night.


Cowboys fan favourite and premiership-winner Jake Granville celebrates his 200th NRL appearance against the Eels. Now in his 11th season of first grade, Granville played 10 games for the Broncos between 2013-14 before moving to North Queensland in 2015 where he has been a staple of the Cowboys team ever since.


Aside from a resounding 35-4 victory in Round 8 last season, the Cowboys have struggled in recent seasons against the Eels. The triumph in Darwin is North Queensland’s only win against Parramatta in their previous five meetings. The Eels lead the overall head-to-head match-up 24-21.


With less than 2,000 tickets left for sale as of Thursday afternoon, a third sell-out of the season at Queensland Country Bank Stadium remains a possibility for the Members Round clash on Saturday night. The Cowboys played in front of sold out crowds for both the Good Friday clash with the Dolphins and the Round 18 victory over the Tigers.


Todd Payten has again named an unchanged side as the Cowboys search for a sixth consecutive victory. If successful, it would be the second streak of six wins in as many seasons for North Queensland, following the unbeaten run between Round 6-11 in 2022.


Scott Drinkwater continues to lead the NRL in try assists with 21, one in front of South Sydney’s Cody Walker. Drinkwater ranks second with 24 line-break assists, one behind Nicho Hynes. Valentine Holmes continues to close the gap as he searches for his second-straight NRL point-scoring title. Holmes sits on 158 points, 15 behind Jamayne Isaako. Chad Townsend remains close to the top of most kicking stats. His four field goals are tied for the lead and sits second for kick metres and total kicks. Reece Robson ranks third in the NRL with 719 tackles.

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.