Josh Mercer previews the Saturday evening clash between the North Queensland Cowboys and the Melbourne Storm. Here’s what we have to look forward to.
North Queensland Cowboys Vs Melbourne Strom
Venue: Queensland Country Bank Stadium, Townsville
Date: Saturday, May 21, 5:30 pm
MATCHDAY TEAM NEWS
Related: NRL Team List TuesdayEmbed from Getty Images
Cowboys: 1. Scott Drinkwater 2. Kyle Feldt 3. Valentine Holmes 4. Peta Hiku 5. Murray Taulagi 6. Tom Dearden 7. Chad Townsend 8. Jordan McLean 9. Reece Robson 10. Reuben Cotter 11. Tom Gilbert 12. Jeremiah Nanai 13. Jason Taumalolo 14. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 15. Heilum Luki 16. Coen Hess 17. Griffin Neame 18. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown 19. Jake Granville 20. Connelly Lemuelu 21. Ben Condon 22. Jake Bourke 23. Ben Hampton 24. Brendan Elliot
Coach Todd Payten has picked the same team that beat the Tigers in magic round.Embed from Getty Images
Storm: 1. Tyran Wishart 2. Nick Meaney 3. Marion Seve 4. Justin Olam 5. Xavier Coates 6. Cameron Munster 7. Jahrome Hughes 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Harry Grant 10. Brandon Smith 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Kenny Bromwich 13. Josh King 14. Alec MacDonald 15. Dean Ieremia 16. Trent Loiero 17. Tui Kamikamica 18. Chris Lewis 19. Cooper Johns 20. Tom Eisenhuth 21. Jordan Grant 22. Bronson Garlick 23. William Warbrick 24. Jayden Nikorima
Jahrome Hughes returns to the Storm line-up. Nelson Asofa-Solomona (knee) will miss the game, and Dean Ieremia is the new face on the bench.
Referee: Grant Atkins
The Cowboys are having a great season so far. After losing to the Bulldogs in round one, they have gone on to win seven games and are currently sitting third on the ladder. The highlight of that run was a 35-4 win over the Eels in round 8.
If the Storm had the same team that played last week line up in any round, they would win the majority of those games. Unfortunately, they played against the defending premiers, and they couldn’t keep up with them. As much as missing Ryan Papenhyuzen hurt, the absence of Jahrome Hughes is what hurt them the most. Hughes is a dynamic player and always on the spot when a big play is needed.
Chad Townsend is precisely what the Cowboys needed and is possibly the year’s buy. He leads the team around well and has brought Tom Dearden out of his shell and playing good football. The other player who seems to have found a home is Scott Drinkwater at fullback. He has been playing really well and there isn’t as much pressure on him at the back as there was when he was playing five-eighth.
The Cowboys will need to show up this weekend if they are to win this weekend. If they play as they did against the Roosters, the Storm will run up a score against them.Embed from Getty Images
The Cowboys and Storm have met six times since the 2017 grand final with they Storm winning all six.
Storm by 10.
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