North Queensland Cowboys 28
Tries: Morgan, Cooper, Thurston, Moga, Linnett
Goals: Thurston 4/6
Gold Coast Titans 8
Goals: Gordon 2/2
Jonathan Thurston’s heroic performance helped his North Queensland Cowboys side to a third straight win as they beat Gold Coast Titans convincingly 28-8.
The half back scored a gift of a try as well as having a hand in the other four scores for the Cowboys as they continued a brilliant run of form which has put them well in contention for the finals.
Round 21 was Marvel’s Superhero week as a number of sides donned shirts specially designed for this round with the Cowboys wearing Thor shirts.
The difference in class was there for all to see as the Titans failed to follow up a 0-8 lead with the Cowboys running in 16 unanswered points in the second half.
The home side went close early on with Taumalolo being denied a try due to a second effort and Antonio Winterstein running out of room out wide when he dove towards the try line.
20 minutes in we had the first points although it was the Titans who were on the board thanks to a Kevin Gordon penalty goal.
Brad Takairangi then went on to extend the Titans lead with a solo effort from close range as he stepped his way past the Cowboys defence.
Michael Morgan hit back immediately though as the visitors made a mess of the kick off and Thurston’s grubber kick was dove on by the fullback.
Queensland were now on top and went into the sheds with a 12-8 lead as Thurston’s perfect ball set free Gavin Cooper, who celebrated his 100th Cowboys appearance with a long range effort which ended in him selling an outrageous dummy to the fullback.
Three minutes into the second 40, Thurston bagged himself a try when David Mead was clattered by three Cowboys’ defenders which forced him to spill the ball. JT was alert to the mistake and pounced on the loose ball to score the easiest try he is likely to ever score.
A ten point lead soon turned into a 14 point lead when Thurston’s bomb towards the corner caused havoc before falling to Morgan, who offloaded to Tautau Moga for the winger to cross for his first try for the club.
Thurston created yet another try when a good wide move ended in Kane Linnett crashing over for a four pointer of his own to put the game well beyond the reach of the Titans.
Gold Coast must have grown tired of how easy Thurston was tearing them apart when they hit the halfback late off the ball however by doing so they gave him the chance to knock over a penalty and end the scoring.
This win puts North Queensland in a great position going into the final stages of the season and they will be confident their campaign won’t end at Round 26, on the other hand the Titans will need a miracle to extend their 2014 season and will be looking towards next year instead.