He has already been crowned the new king of Rugby League. Jonathan Thurston is commonly rated above the likes of the talented Darren Lockyer and quickly became ‘the best player in the world’ when Andrew Johns retired from NRL Rugby League.
There is no doubting that Jonathan Thurston is an NRL footballer with the highest skill level and quality about his game. Often able to create attacking raids from nothing, his fleet of foot and impressive short and long passing game always has the Cowboys on the front foot and regularly tearing teams apart.
JT also hasÂ a top kicking game in his bag of tricks, gaining massive meters for the North Queensland side and bagging plenty of 40/20’s which prove so valuable in todays game.
Seemingly improving each year Jonathan Thurston has been the crux of the Cowboys high riding results over the past few years, oh how the Bulldogs would be ruing the day they let JT go – proving to be a massive mistake for the now struggling Belmore club.
If there is one fault with JT’s game, it’s his tendancy to ‘blow up’ or have the occasional brain snap, which is often directed at referees and even his fellow players at times. The smarter, more experienced players know the way to beat Thurston is to unsettle his game and talk a little trash to get under his skin.
During 2007, this worked quite regularly. While Thurston was still a superpower in many games, too often he was wasting his breath debating referees or getting himself sinbinned over silly tactics.
It would be hard for any coach to put a harness on someone like Thurston, nor would they want to – but if someone doesn’t give Thurston the good oil and get him to tone things down, he risks becoming a burdon on his Cowboys team and possibly hurting his chances of future rep jerseys.
It might seem a steep call to hold JT back from rep duties, but when you consider the likes of his competitiors – you have Scott Prince and a host of others waiting for their chance.
Passion itself is one of Jonathan Thurstons biggest assets, but too much of a good thing can be the worst thing in the world and if JT doesn’t put the brakes on the bad stuff in 2008 he could find his mob sliding out of contention along with his reputation.