North Queensland Cowboys win but lose

North Queensland Cowboys 28 def Canberra Raiders 24

The struggling Cowboys stopped the recent rot, snapping their two game losing streak and holding out the unlucky Canberra Raiders to win in the ACT.

The win looks to have come at a massive cost, with the Cowboys having 14 players on the field at one stage and the NRL sure to investigate, meaning 2 points could be deducted.

The Cowboys improved their leaky defence of late, and had nice spark in attack. Thurston is surely still hampered by his hand injury, as he seemed to nurse it at times and was good without being his usually brilliant self.

Thurston also needs to work on his referee relations. The firey halfback again clashing with the referee and risking a sin bin at a crucial time. The super star needs to curb his hot head or risk costing his team dearly in the future.

The Raiders were very unlucky last night. They had good structure, and looked good in the halves with Dobson being partnered by the dynamic Terry Campese. Campese had a top game, and but for a few minor mistakes – he took some wrong options and occasionally ran himself a little too much, but the kid has plenty of potential. He was a handful for the Cowboys all night and looks to be a perfect partner for Todd Carney when he returns.

The ref calls seemed to favour the Cowboys, and to Canberra’s credit they kept fighting on and still nearly stole the match in the last 60 seconds.

For the Cowboys, the Bowen brothers were great, with Ty Williams also putting in a big game and in the forwards Shane Tronc toiled hard all game, geting his workrate right up.

The Cowboys have a bye next week, and the Raiders stay at home to face the Wests Tigers.

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