Five Cowboys named in Origin squads
Tuesday 26 June 2012 8:16 PM
State of Origin commitments could strip North Queensland of as many as five first-choice players for Sunday's 17th-round Women in League NRL contest against the Vodafone Warriors at Mount Smart Stadium (4.00pm kick-off NZ time).
New Zealand-born Cowboys prop James Tamou was named in the New South Wales team on Sunday for the series-deciding Origin III battle at Suncorp Stadium tomorrow week (Wednesday, July 04).
And today four of his team-mates were included in an enlarged Queensland squad – centre Brent Tate, standoff Johnathan Thurston and prop Matt Scott plus fullback Matt Bowen, one of seven players listed on the bench.
Bowen has been included as an option for Billy Slater, who has been named at fullback despite the knee injury received in Origin II which has him at long odds to play next week. The experienced Bowen could be a straight replacement if Slater fails to come up to scratch or coach Mal Meninga could move Greg Inglis to fullback and bring Melbourne’s Vodafone Warriors-bound Dane Nielsen into the centres.
If Slater is cleared or Inglis is chosen to play fullback then Bowen could be freed up to play for the Cowboys in Auckland. Indeed Bowen has still been named in the North Queensland line-up in any case.
Also in the North Queensland side are four New Zealanders - Antonio Winterstein, Kalifa Faifai Loa, Ricky Thorby and Jason Taumalolo.
Winterstein, a member of the Kiwis’ 2010 Four Nations squad, is in the centres
with 2011 Kiwi Faifai Loa on the left wing. Former St George Illawarra forward Thorby is named as a starting prop while the explosive Taumalolo, part of the Kiwis’ Anzac Test squad this year, is on the bench.
While set to lose at least four of their top players, the Cowboys still boast an array of quality performers. Apart from the New Zealanders they have prolific try scorer Ashley Graham on the right wing, seasoned NRL campaigners in hooker Aaron Payne and prop Ashton Sims plus back rowers Gavin Cooper, Glenn Hall and Dallas Johnson.
Meanwhile, a feature of the Queensland Origin squad is the naming of another New Zealander – Brisbane’s Auckland-born Ben Te’o. Included on the bench, he’s in line to make his Queensland debut after opting to align himself with Australia, yet another example of a departure from the state ethos on which Origin football was founded. Despite recent speculation, Canterbury-Bankstown’s Auckland-born prop Sam Kasiano has not been selected.
The Queensland Origin squad is: Billy Slater, Darius Boyd, Justin Hodges, Greg Inglis, Brent Tate, Johnathan Thurston, Cooper Cronk, Matt Scott, Cameron Smith (c), Petero Civoniceva, Nate Myles, Sam Thaiday, Corey Parker. Interchange: Ben Hannant, Ben Te’o, Dave Taylor, David Shillington, Matt Gillett, Matt Bowen, Dane Nielsen.
The teams for this weekend’s 17th-round NRL matches are:
Brisbane Broncos v Cronulla Sharks, Suncorp Stadium, 7:35pm
BRONCOS: Josh Hoffman, Lachlan Maranta, Jack Reed, Gerard Beale, Dale Copley, Corey Norman, Peter Wallace, Josh McGuire, Andrew McCullough, Mitchell Dodds, Alex Glenn, Brendon Gibb, Dunamis Lui. Interchange (from): Ben Hunt, Aaron Whitchurch, Jarrod Wallace, Nick Slyney, Kurt Baptiste
SHARKS: Matthew Wright, Isaac Gordon, Ben Pomeroy, Colin Best, Nathan Stapleton, Chad Townsend, Jeff Robson, Bryce Gibbs, Isaac De Gois, Ben Ross, Jeremy Smith, Jayson Bukuya, Wade Graham. Interchange (from): Andrew Fifita, Tyson Frizell, John Morris, Mark Taufua, Sam Tagataese
Parramatta Eels v Newcastle Knights, Parramatta Stadium, 7:30pm
EELS: Luke Burt, Ryan Morgan, Cheyse Blair, Willie Tonga, Ken Sio, Luke Kelly, Chris Sandow, Tim Mannah, Matt Keating, Justin Poore, Nathan Hindmarsh, Matthew Ryan, Ben Smith. Interchange: Joseph Paulo, Fuifui Moimoi, Mitchell Allgood, Taniela Lasalo, Reni Maitua
KNIGHTS: Peter Mata'utia, James McManus, Dane Gagai, Timana Tahu, Akuila Uate, Jarrod Mullen, Tyrone Roberts, Kade Snowden, Danny Buderus, Willie Mason, Chris Houston, Joel Edwards, Neville Costigan. Interchange (from): Zane Tetevano, Zeb Taia, Adam Cuthbertson, Alex McKinnon, Kevin Naiqama
South Sydney Rabbitohs v Penrith Panthers, ANZ Stadium, 3:00pm
RABBITOHS: Nathan Merritt, Andrew Everingham, Shaune Corrigan, Dylan Farrell, Justin Hunt, John Sutton, Adam Reynolds, Scott Geddes, Issac Luke, Luke Burgess, Ben Lowe, Chris McQueen, Michael Croker. Interchange: Jason Clark, Dave Tyrrell, George Burgess, Nathan Peats
PANTHERS: Lachlan Coote, Etu Uaisele, Brad Tighe, Geoff Daniela, David Simmons, Blake Austin, Harry Siejka, Dayne Weston, Kevin Kingston, Nigel Plum, Clint Newton, Cameron Ciraldo, Ryan Simpkins. Interchange (from): Matt Robinson, Chris Armit, Mitch Achurch, Arana Taumata, Danny Galea
Vodafone Warriors v North Queensland Cowboys, Mt Smart Stadium, 4:00pm
VODAFONE WARRIORS: Kevin Locke, Bill Tupou, Ben Henry, Konrad Hurrell, Glen Fisiiahi, James Maloney, Shaun Johnson, Russell Packer, Nathan Friend, Ben Matulino, Lewis Brown, Simon Mannering, Elijah Taylor. Interchange (from): Jacob Lillyman, Micheal Luck, Sione Lousi, Feleti Mateo, Steve Rapira
COWBOYS: Matthew Bowen, Ashley Graham, Antonio Winterstein, Kane Linnett, Kalifa Faifai Loa, Michael Morgan, Ray Thompson, Ashton Sims, Aaron Payne, Ricky Thorby, Gavin Cooper, Glenn Hall, Dallas Johnson. Interchange (from): Joel Riethmuller, Scott Bolton, Jason Taumalolo, Cory Paterson, Mosese Pangai
Canberra Raiders v St George Illawarra Dragons, Canberra Stadium, 7:00pm
RAIDERS: Reece Robinson, Dimitri Pelo, Jarrod Croker, Blake Ferguson, Edrick Lee, Josh McCrone, Sam Williams, Dane Tilse, Travis Waddell, Tom Learoyd-Lahrs, Josh Papalii, Joel Thompson, Shaun Fensom. Interchange (from): Bronson Harrison, Sam Mataora, Joe Picker, Mark Nicholls
DRAGONS: Jason Nightingale, Daniel Vidot, Chase Stanley, Matt Cooper, Bronx Goodwin, Jamie Soward, Ben Hornby, Dan Hunt, Mitch Rein, Jack de Belin, Jake Marketo, Leeson Ah Mau, Dean Young. Interchange: Nathan Fien, Jeremy Latimore, Matt Prior, Josh Miller
Byes: Melbourne, Canterbury-Bankstown, Manly, Wests Tigers, Gold Coast, Sydney Roosters.