North Queensland left Brookvale Oval with a 26-12 win over Manly, their second win in Sydney this season.
Manly-Warringah 2-0 Trent Hodkinson goal (5th minute)
Tied 2-2 Johnathan Thurston goal (9th minute)
North Queensland 4-2 Thurston goal (16th minute)
Manly-Warringah 8-4 Shaun Lane try (23rd minute), Hodkinson goal (25th minute)
North Queensland 10-8 Jason Taumalolo try (29th minute), Thurston goal (30th minute)
North Queensland 16-8 Antonio Winterstein try (33rd minute), Thurston goal (35th minute)
North Queensland 16-12 Brian Kelly try (48th minute)
North Queensland 20-12 Antonio Winterstein try (63rd minute)
North Queensland 26-12 Enari Tuala try (68th minute), Thurston goal (69th minute)
THURSTON AND TAUMALOLO DELIVER
Without Coen Hess, Michael Morgan, Gavin Cooper, Matt Scott and Scott Bolton, North Queensland needed their stars to lift at Brookvale Oval. Fortunately, Johnathan Thurston and Jason Taumalolo responded: Thurston kicked five goals from six, while Taumalolo scored North Queensland’s first try and ran for 234 metres. The win pushed North Queensland to 4-9 and equal with Manly.
NORTH QUEENSLAND SHINE AT BROOKY
A cold Thursday night in suburban Sydney is a long way from a balmy Townsville night, but North Queensland – after heartbreaking losses to Souths and Melbourne – rebounded. After trading penalty goals (a worrying trend this season), Taumalolo and Antonio Winterstein scored to give North Queensland a 16-8 halftime lead. Thurston – of course – was perfect with four goals from four. They continued the job in the second half, with Winterstein’s second try and Enari Tuala’s try breaking a three-game losing streak.
After two big wins (against Brisbane and Melbourne) and a close loss in Canberra, Manly – despite missing the Trbojevic brothers – would’ve fancied themselves against a struggling Cowboys. They trailed 16-8 at halftime and, while Shaun Lane’s try cut the margin to four, that was as close as they got. The loss keeps Manly in the bottom four.
DANGEROUS SHOULDER CHARGE
The attempted elimination – and increasing penalisation – of the shoulder charge is one of the modern game’s bugbears: detractors cry the game’s gone ‘soft’, while supporters say it’s good for player welfare. A shoulder charge on Thurston in the 15th minute showed the danger, Thurston’s head whipping back after being hit by Jack Gosiewski from the side, with Gosiewski put on report. While Thurston recovered to take the penalty goal, it could have been worse for the champion North Queensland half. Andrew Johns was very critical of the tackle during Channel Nine’s halftime summary.
NORTH QUEENSLAND 26
Tries: Antonio Winterstein (2), Jason Taumalolo, Enari Tuala
Goals: Johnathan Thurston 5/6
Drop Goals: NA
Tries: Shaun Lane, Brian Kelly
Goals: Trent Hodkinson 2/3
Drop Goals: NA
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles: 1 Matthew Wright, 2 Jorge Taufua, 3 Moses Suli, 4 Brian Kelly, 5 Akuila Uate, 6 Trent Hodkinson, 7 Daly Cherry-Evans (c), 8 Addin Fonua-Blake, 9 Apisai Koroisau, 10 Martin Taupau, 11 Joel Thompson, 15 Jack Gosiewski 13 Shaun Lane
Interchange: 12 Frank Winterstein, 14 Bradley Parker, 16 Lloyd Perrett, 17 Toafofoa Sipley
North Queensland Cowboys: 1 Lachlan Coote, 2 Kyle Feldt, 3 Justin O’Neill, 4 Enari Tuala, 5 Antonio Winterstein, 6 Te Maire Martin, 7 Johnathan Thurston (c), 15 Sam Hoare, 9 Jake Granville, 16 Corey Jensen, 11 Shaun Fensom, 12 Ethan Lowe, 13 Jason Taumalolo
Interchange: 14 Ben Hampton, 15 Sam Hoare, 17 Francis Molo, 18 Kane Linnett, 20 Mitchell Dunn