Time to look ahead to Sunday's decider! Rob Crosby has a full look at both teams and what to expect ...
34 hours ago
The North Queensland Cowboys have thumped the Sydney Roosters 50-12 in front of 10,008 locals at TIO Stadium, Darwin, tonight.
In extreme humidity and heat, the boys from the far north adjusted the better than there opponents as they cruised to victory.
It was all the Cowboys from the get go, as they raced out to a 16-0 lead after just 17 minutes, with former Rooster Antonio Winterstein scoring a double.
The game stood at 28-0 at halftime in favour of the Cowboys but the Roosters offered a fight back after the break. Tries to Shaun Kenny-Dowall and Joseph Leilua in the 46th and 50th minutes respectively saw the Roosters shape up for a comeback, but, the Cowboys slammed the door shut in the 65th minute with Joseph Taumalolo scoring his first try of the match.
With the try to Taumalolo the flood gates reopened for the Cowboys as they piled on another three tries before full-time.
Sydney Roosters 12 were defeated by North Queensland Cowboys 50
National Rugby League - Round 7 - Saturday April 14, 2012 7:30pm
Venue: TIO Stadium, Darwin
Referee: Ashley Klein and Gavin Morris
Video Referee: Phil Cooley
Touch Judges: Ricky MacFarlane and Dan Eastwood
Halftime: Sydney Roosters 0 North Queensland Cowboys 28
LeagueUnlimited.com players of the match:
3 Points - Antonio Winterstein (2 Tries)
2 Points - Matt Bowen (2 Tries)
1 Point - Jason Taumololo (2 Tries)
SYDNEY ROOSTERS (12)
Tries: Shaun Kenny-Dowall, Joseph Leilua
Conversions: Braith Anasta (2/2)
NORTH QUEENSLAND COWBOYS (50)
Tries: Matt Bowen (2), Ashley Graham, Antonio Winterstein (2), Ray Thompson, Kalifa Fai-Fai Loa, Jason Taumalolo (2)
Conversions: Matt Bowen (1/1), Johnathan Thurston (6/8)
LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary Stand by!
1 min: Roosters kick off to the Cowboys as the game in Darwin, begins!
1 min: INFRINGEMENT: Cowboys. 1-0.
1 min: Cowboys close the line here
1 min: Handover! Play the ball Roosters 3 metres from their line
2 min: Kick comes through from the Roosters, Graham gets the ball 30 out but he is thrown into touch by Sydney. Scrum sydney.
4 min: INFRINGEMENT: Penalty Cowboys. 2-0.
6 min: Big kick by the Roosters. 20 metre tap Cowboys.
8 min: TRY
Ball goes to ground, Winterstein scoops it up and goes straight to the line. Thurston converts.
North Queensland Cowboys 6-0
9 min: Roosters kick off and give the ball back to the lucky Cowboys.
12 min: TRY
A great section of draw and passes, gives Winterstein his second of the night. Thurston converts
North Queensland Cowboys 12-0
12 min: Anasta kicks off, Cowboys catch it and run it back to the 20
13 min: Roosters have the ball back
15 min: Cowboys 30 from the Roosters line
16 min: VIDEO REF: Cowboys get in the corner and the decision is going upstairs
17 min: TRY Northern Storm
Cowboys doing well to keep up with the score board as they crash over in the corner! Thurston misses
North Queensland Cowboys 16-0
18 min: VIDEO REF: Could the Cowboys have scored another try? Cowboys claim a try in the left corner.
20 min: TRY
What is going on with Sydney? The Cowboys are in front of the scoreboard here in Darwin. Thurston converts from the Sideline. Break now as the humidity is forcing a four quarter game
North Queensland Cowboys 22-0
20 min: We are back underway! Cowboys ball!
21 min: Thurston kicks down to Minichello! Play the ball 40 out
22 min: The Cowboys; outside backs are tearing the Roosters to shreds
25 min: INFRINGEMENT: Penalty Roosters. 1-2
25 min: And the Rooters put it down, 30 metres from the line.
27 min: VIDEO REF: Bowen may have scored. checking onside and grounding.
28 min: TRY
And it is awarded. Try next to the posts. Thurston converts
North Queensland Cowboys 28-0
29 min: It is the second phase football show from the Cowboys
30 min: Forward pass here for the Cowboys. Made it to the halfway line by the third but it breaks down. Scrum Roosters on halfway
31 min: Roosters are tackled on the last. Cowboys ball.
31 min: INFRINGEMENT: Penalty Cowboys. 4-1.
33 min: Roosters ball 30 from their line.
33 min: Mistake Roosters. Cowboys ball 35 metres from their line.
34 min: Tate tries to offload to Thurston but its put to ground and Tate is sore.
35 min: Another incomplete set by the Roosters. Scrum Cowboy 30 from their line.
37 min: Cowboy tackled on the last. Handover 3 metres from the Roosters line.
39 min: Drop out Roosters
40 min: Halftime!
40 min: And we are back under way through a Cowboys kick off. Roosters ball
40 min: And the Roosters continue their woeful ways.
42 min: Roosters defuse a Cowboys kick. Roosters ball 25 metres out.
43 min: Mistake by the Cowboys. Roosters scrum, 40 out.
46 min: TRY
Kenny-Dowall launches above the Cowboys and scores a try off an attacking kick. Anasta converts
North Queensland Cowboys 28-4
47 min: INFRINGEMENT: Penalty Roosters. 2-4.
48 min: Roosters with momentum.
50 min: TRY
JOSEPH LEILUA SCORES A TRY! Roosters making a comeback after yet another attacking kick. Anasta converts.
North Queensland Cowboys 28-12
51 min: VIDEO REF: Roosters cross over but they are looking at a knock on.
51 min: NO TRY: Knock on.
51 min: Thurston restarts the game through a play the ball.
54 min: Cowboys slowing down but the Roosters staying strong
56 min: Pearce puts the ball down 30 metres out from the cowboys line. Play the ball.
58 min: Mistake by the Roosters and the Cowboys have the ball on halfway
59 min: Roosters have the ball back 20 metres from their line
59 min: Aiden Guerra kicks and Bowen mishandles it. Drinks break and when we return there will be a Roosters scrum.
60 min: And play is back on
60 min: VIDEO REF: Friend goes close, referees unsure.
60 min: REFS CALL: Penalty Roosters
61 min: Bowen defuses a kick and a 20m tap Cowboy
62 min: INFRINGEMENT: Penalty Cowboys
65 min: TRY
Some good foot work by Taumalolo sees the Cowboys all but win the game. Thurston converts
North Queensland Cowboys 34-12
66 min: Cowboys firing up as the Cowboys have the Roosters pinned in their own half
69 min: TRY
The Roosters drop the ball and Ray Thompson picks the ball up and virtually runs straight to score. Thurston adds the extras.
North Queensland Cowboys 40-12
69 min: Roosters give the ball back to the Cowboys
70 min: The play crumbles as once again the Roosters make a mistake
73 min: Cowboys working it to the halfway line
75 min: TRY
Thurston gives a short ball to the massive Taumalolo who crosses for the next Cowboys try, Ashton Sims placed on report for a forearm earlier in the game and Thurston misses.
North Queensland Cowboys 44-12
76 min: Cowboys run the ball out 5 metres off kick off
77 min: Massive kick. 20 metre tap for the Roosters
78 min: The Roosters give the ball back to the Cowboys
78 min: VIDEO REF: Bowen races down to score but the refs arent sure what went on
79 min: TRY
The try is awarded after the referees, 2 Roosters and 2 Cowboys all go down in a big collision. Matt Bowen converts
North Queensland Cowboys 50-12
80 min: That is all she wrote in Darwin.