He might have speculation constantly surrounding his future, but that did not stop North Queensland Cowboys half Johnathan Thurston from putting on a show tonight – as he guided his Cowboys side to a 24-12 win over the Canterbury Bulldogs at Bluetongue Stadium.
Canterbury, who took their home game to Gosford for this Rd 1 clash, could not end up getting on top of JT and the Cowboys – with the play-maker saying he will make a decision this week, with the club confident he will choose to stay in Townsville.
Henry, who was particularly pleased with the way his side defended against the Bulldogs in the second half, is quietly confident that Thurston will stay despite hefty offers from rival clubs.
“My gut feeling all along has been he’ll stay,” said Henry.
“Until it’s done, it’s not done but I’m confident the club … have been able to put something together to enable him to stay at the Cowboys.
“I think there’s a bit of clarity about the whole thing now and we will get something this week.”
Thurston confirmed that he would make a decision sometime in the next week, a decision that all fans of the NRL wait anxiously for.
“That’s right. Really looking forward to the season,” he said.
“I’ll make a decision this week.”
With the Cowboys touted as potential premiership favourites, team-mate Matt Scott believes that re-signing Thurston would be the icing on the cake for a few years of dominance.
“There’s a lot of faith in our squad at the moment,” Scott said.
“I offered Johno to babysit his kid when it comes along if he stays so fingers crossed … he stays with us.”
For the Bulldogs, it was a case of their errors letting them down, and coach Des Hasler knows that you cannot afford to make mistakes such as those against the Cowboys.
“We were just guilty of too many errors and you can’t give a side like the Cowboys who have some really experienced campaigners cheap possession,” said Bulldogs coach Des Hasler.
3. Johnathan Thurston
2. Ashley Graham
1. James Tamou