Cowboys await finals fate after Brisbane defeat

After conceding 52 points the previous week, Brisbane produced an outstanding defensive display to beat North Queensland 20-10 in Townsville.

The Broncos started the brightest, notching the first try on 13 minutes. Anthony Milford feigned to kick under pressure, grubbered to himself before sending James Roberts away. The centre found Matt Gillett on his outside who scored.

Brisbane were in again on 19 minutes when Kodi Nikorima this time broke through and kicked for Roberts on his inside. Kahu converted to extend the lead to 10. The margin would be 14 when Nikorima aimed a high kick at struggling Cowboys winger Antonio Winterstein, the winger being out jumped by his opposite Kahu.

North Queensland got themselves on the board with eight to go until half-time. A short pass from Michael Morgan was taken in by Gavin Cooper who reached out to plant the ball on the line. Ethan Lowe’s conversion left the score at 14-6 at half-time.

After Ben Hampton had been held up over the line for the Cowboys, it was Brisbane who struck first in the second half. Stand-in hooker Ben Hunt fed Adam Blair who spun at the line to crash over. Jordan Kahu’s conversion making the score 20-6.

Brisbane then withstood a barrage of Cowboys attacks to seal their victory. They were however broken finally on the last play of the game when Morgan found Kyle Feldt with a cut-out pass.

Cowboys: 1 Lachlan Coote, 2 Kyle Feldt, 3 Javid Bowen, 4 Kane Linnett, 5 Antonio Winterstein, 6 Te Maire Martin, 7 Michael Morgan, 8 John Asiata, 9 Jake Granville, 10 Scott Bolton, 11 Gavin Cooper, 12 Ethan Lowe, 13 Jason Taumalolo; Interchanges: 14 Ben Hampton, 15 Coen Hess, 16 Corey Jensen, 17 Shaun Fensom

Tries: Cooper, Feldt; Goals: Lowe

Broncos: 1 Darius Boyd, 2 Corey Oates, 3 James Roberts, 4 Tautau Moga, 5 Jordan Kahu, 6 Anthony Milford, 7 Kodi Nikorima, 8 Sam Thaiday, 9 Ben Hunt, 10 Adam Blair, 11 Alex Glenn, 12 Matt Gillett, 13 Josh McGuire; Interchanges: 14 Benji Marshall, 15 Tevita Pangai Junior, 16 Joe Ofahengaue, 17 Herman Ese’ese

Tries: Gillett, Roberts, Kahu, Blair; Goals: Kahu 2

Full coverage of all the weekend’s NRL matches will feature in Monday’s issue of League Express, available in the shops and online from Sunday evening.