2022 NRL Round 3 Preview, Broncos Vs Cowboys

Jack Harbidge previews the Multicultural Round clash between the Brisbane Broncos and the North Queensland Cowboys at Suncorp Stadium…



Brisbane Broncos Vs North Queensland Cowboys
Venue: Suncorp Stadium
Date: Sunday 27th March 2022


Related: NRL Team List Tuesday

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Broncos: 1. Tesi Niu 2. Corey Oates 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Herbie Farnworth 5. Selwyn Cobbo 6. Albert Kelly 7. Adam Reynolds 8. Keenan Palasia 9. Jake Turpin 10. Payne Haas 11. Kurt Capewell 12. Jordan Riki 13. Patrick Carrigan 14. Ryan James 15. Kobe Hetherington 16. TC Robati 17. Billy Walters 18. David Mead 19. Rhys Kennedy 20. Tyson Gamble 21. Jordan Pereira 22. Cory Paix 23. Brenko Lee 24. Corey Jensen.

Pat Carrigan is named in the squad but suffered a training injury during the week so is under an injury cloud for Sunday, though Broncos Head of Performance Dave Ballard has confirmed he is expected to play on Sunday before further assessment closer to the time.

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Cowboys: 1. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 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. Coen Hess 11. Tom Gilbert 12. Jeremiah Nanai 13. Jason Taumalolo 14. Jake Granville 15. Heilum Luki 16. Reuben Cotter 17. Griffin Neame 18. Emry Pere 19. Scott Drinkwater 20. Connelly Lemuelu 21. Brendan Elliot 22. Ben Condon 23. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown 24. Daejarn Asi.

Reuben Cotter comes into the squad for Mitchell Dunn, who has an ACL injury.

Referee: Adam Gee


While it is not rivals round, Week Three brings a host of derby’s including the Queensland derby. Both teams come into the fixture off the back of much needed round 2 wins. While the Broncos justified favouritism against the Bulldogs at Accor Stadium in Sydney, the Cowboys dominated a well-oiled Raiders machine with a second half rout at Queensland Country Bank Stadium.

The hot North Queensland side now make the journey to Suncorp Stadium trailing Brisbane 35-18 (2 draws) in the fixture. Brisbane holds a similar supremacy over their Queensland counterparts, having won 11 of the 17 meetings between the sides at their home ground and as a result are favoured again to win the game this Sunday.

Brisbane haven’t gained supremacy without casualties, however, and Patrick Carrigan may be out for the clash along with Brendan Pikura following training injuries to the pair. The former has been key in enforcing physicality in the middles with superstar Payne Haas and, while he is set to play this Sunday, he will be a big late miss with regard to intensity if he fails a fitness test in the lead up.

Similarly, the Cowboys are without Michell Dunn, who suffered an ACL injury, so Reuben Cotter comes into the side as a result, while Reece Robson makes his 50th appearance in first grade. While it isn’t a huge milestone game, it will certainly give the hooker some more impetus coming into this Queensland Derby – if he didn’t have it already.

Outside of Payne Haas, the Broncos outside backs have been pivotal in their resurgence following their dire season in 2021. Herbie Farnworth and the rejuvenated Corey Oates stacked up the metres last time out, with 262 and 209 respectively; the pair exiting and finishing well will be key in getting Brisbane over the line this Saturday.

On the other hand, Jason Taumalolo is arguably more valuable than ever this Sunday as he locks horns with Brisbane’s talisman Payne Haas. It bills as one of those key battles where a win for either player means a win for his side; and it should be one of the best we see this season.

If the game needed any more spice to it, Adam Reynolds will be lining up for his home debut. The captain has made a marked difference to the Brisbane Broncos side this season and he should be the difference this Sunday should he be able to play off the back of dominant carries.

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The largest margin of victory in this fixture came on 12th April 1998, when the Broncos beat the Cowboys 58-4 (ANZ Stadium).


Brisbane Broncos by 6

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