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2020 NRL Round 17, Cowboys 23 Dragons 22 – Report

Craig Cauchi reviews a father’s day thriller as the Cowboys beat the Dragons in Golden Point. Here’s how the game went.

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MATCH TIMELINE

Minute Scoring Play Score
7th Try Frances Molo (Cowboys) Cowboys 4-0
9th Goal Valentine Holmes (Cowboys) Cowboys 6-0
24th Try Euan Aitken (Dragons) Cowboys 6-4
25th Goal Zac Lomax (Dragons) Draw 6-6
30th Try Mikaele Ravalawa (Dragons) Dragons 10-6
39th Penalty Goal Zac Lomax (Dragons) Dragons 12-6
40th HALFTIME Dragons 12-6
41st Try Jake Clifford (Cowboys) Dragons 12-10
42nd Goal Valentine Holmes (Cowboys) Draw 12-12
46th Try Jacob Host (Dragons) Dragons 16-12
47th Goal Zac Lomax (Dragos) Dragons 18-12
57th Try Valentine Holmes (Cowboys) Dragons 18-16
59th Goal Valentine Holmes (Cowboys) Draw 18-18
63rd Penalty Goal Zac Lomax (Dragons) Dragons 20-18
66th Try Kyle Feldt (Cowboys) Cowboys 22-20
77th Penalty Goal Zac Lomax (Dragons) Draw 22-22
80th FULLTIME Draw 22-22
83rd Field Goal Valentine Holmes (Cowboys) Cowboys 23-22

MATCH SUMMARY

1st Half

The Cowboys opened the scoring with Francis Molo charging off a ball close to the line. Reuben Cotter held the ball up before selecting to hit the prop forward with the Dragons forwards guilty of holding and sliding off too quickly. The Dragons struggled for fluency in attack and were passive in defence but were able to shake it off to score the next try through Euan Aitken. Corey Norman broke the line on halfway and on the next play, Ben Hunt went to the line and – with the superior numbers – found Euan Aitken to get the Dragons on the board. It wasn’t long after before the Dragons hit the lead for the first time off the back of a sensational put down from Mikaele Ravlawa. Zac Lomax finished a backline movement with a tidy flick pass to the Dragons winger, who caught the ball as close to the side line as you possibly could and still managed to keep his body inside the field of play as he grounded the ball. The Dragons bombed an opportunity to extend their lead with a try at halftime instead they had to settle with 2 points from a penalty goal.

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2nd Half

The Dragons were made to pay – off the very first set – for not catching the bomb on the full as the ball bounced for the Cowboys, who were able to score in the corner through Jake Clifford. The try was given the all clear by the bunker despite Mitch Dunn being offside from the kick and inside the 10 when it came down. Adam Clune shook off a disappointing first half by playing a major role in the Dragons next try to Jacob Host. The halfback took on the short side, shrugged off a couple of defenders and passed off to the second rower to crash over. The Cowboys hit back – once again making the Dragons pay for holding on the try line – with Scott Drinkwater passing back on the inside for Valentine Holmes to score. The Dragons were gifted a penalty goal right in front of the posts off the back of a two-on-one strip. Scott Drinkwater set up the next try, tearing the Dragons left side defence to pieces and passing off for Kyle Feldt to stroll over. The Cowboys were penalised for being offside while defending their own line with Zac Lomax converting his third penalty goal for the match and bringing the scores level and sending it into extra time.

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GAME HIGHLIGHT

Valentine Holmes had a cracker of a match well before it went into extra time. The fullback was damaging at the back of the field, scoring a try and kicking a few clutch conversions to keep the Cowboys in the match. It was no surprise then that it was the Cowboys fullback that they turned for the match winning field goal that ended the Cowboys losing stretch.

SQUADS

North Queensland Cowboys: 1. Valentine Holmes, 2. Kyle Feldt, 3. Justin O’Neill, 4. Esan Marsters, 5. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow, 6. Scott Drinkwater, 7. Jake Clifford, 8. Francis Molo, 9. Reuben Cotter, 10. Jordan McLean, 12. Mitchell Dunn, 16. Tom Gilbert, 13. Josh McGuire, 11. Gavin Cooper, 14. Daejarn Asi, 15. John Asiata, 17. Corey Jensen

St George Illawarra Dragons: 1. Matthew Dufty, 2. Jordan Pereira, 3. Euan Aitken, 4. Zac Lomax, 5. Mikaele Ravalawa, 6. Corey Norman, 7. Adam Clune, 8. Blake Lawrie, 9. Ben Hunt, 10. Josh Kerr, 11. Tyson Frizell, 12. Jacob Host, 13. Cameron McInnes, 14. Billy Brittain, 15. Jackson Ford, 16. Tyrell Fuimaono, 17. Kaide Ellis

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