Cowboys see off in-form Knights - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Cowboys see off in-form Knights

Ian McCullough 11/07/2011 10:05:28 PM Comments (0)

A resilient North Queensland showed they can win without Johnathan Thurston on Monday, chalking up a 22-12 NRL victory over in-form Newcastle at Ausgrid Stadium.

The Cowboys have a wretched record without Thurston, winning just seven of 25 previous matches without the Queensland and Australia halfback, but returned to fifth spot on the ladder after ending the Knights' run of three successive wins.

Newcastle were boosted by the return of Jarrod Mullen and Adam MacDougall, from long layoffs, with the visitors including Willie Tonga, who overcame a biceps problem to take the field for the first time since May.

The Cowboys led after just six minutes when the impressive Matt Bowen's teasing kick was batted into the path of Will Tupou by James McManus, for the easiest of finishes.

The early setback prompted the Knights to lift and, after a sustained spell of pressure, skipper Kurt Gidley got his side level when he brushed aside Michael Morgan and rolled to the line.

The Cowboys lost Tupou at halftime, the Queensland centre suffering a sternum injury just before the interval.

The second half began with the Knights controlling possession, but they were unable to make any real inroads into the Cowboys half.

A great break from five-eighth Ray Thompson laid the foundations for the Cowboys's second try in the 53rd minute.

The young playmaker's good burst found James Segeyaro, he offloaded to the onrushing Joel Riethmuller and the backrower bundled over for his first NRL try.

Kurt Gidley restored parity almost immediately following a good break from Ryan Stig but it was the NSW utility's last involvement as he limped off with a hamstring problem.

Bowen's penalty restored his side's lead but, without their talismanic captain, the Knights lost their way and Segeyaro increased the visitors' advantage with the Cowboys' third try.

Victory was sealed seven minutes from time when former Knight Cory Paterson, in his first game since being released by the club last month, barged past Stig and over the line.

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