Cowboys collect ground-shaking second home win

In a starring role Cowboys Captain Johnathan Thurston, and fullback Matt Bowen controlled the game to defeat the Canberra Raiders at home for their 2nd Straight. The conditions were good at Dairy Farmers Stadium, despite the 5.2 magnitude earthquake around 3:30PM early in the day.

Thurston, on his game not just in attack but in defence, was mirrored by fullback Matt Bowen who both saved try attempts from the Raiders. Most notably would be Thurston's save on Croker as he went close but was held up just over the line. Not to be out done, Bowen slid Raiders winger Daniel Vidot into touch.

Canberra didn't help their cause with a high penalty count, finishing 11-4 in the Cowboys' favour. Although Raiders fans would argue that young halfback Sam Williams is a better fit in the side (and they would be correct), his kicking game was on the mark most of the time, with opportunities to score from his kicks. The only blemish on his game would be the professional foul in the 65th minute as he lay in the ruck holding down Cowboy, Fai-Fai Loa, in which he was sent to the sin bin for 10 minutes. That said, Raiders fans should be pleased that he extended his contract with the club.

Finally, to wrap up, in a game which was dominated by the Cowboys for 60 minutes they performed well to hold the game to collect the win. The Raiders in patches showed the style which made them known in 2010, but still lacking the control and methods to get them going forward. Overall a well deserved and expected win at home.

Match Details
North Queensland Cowboys 26 defeated Canberra Raiders 18
National Rugby League - Round 6 - Saturday April 16, 2011 7:30pm
Venue: Dairy Farmers Stadium
Referee: Gavin Badger and Steve Lyons
Video Referee: Bernard Sutton
Touch Judges: Paul Holland and David Munro
Crowd: 12,000
Halftime: North Queensland Cowboys 24 Canberra Raiders 4

Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:
3 Points - Johnathan Thurston (1 Try, 4 Conversions, 1 Penalty Goal)
2 Points - Matt Bowen
1 Point - Blake Ferguson (2 Tries)

North Queensland Cowboys (26)
Tries: Johnathan Thurston, Glenn Hall, Scott Bolton, Antonio Winterstein
Conversions: Johnathan Thurston (4/4)
Penalty Goals: Johnathan Thurston (1/1)

Canberra Raiders (18)
Tries: Shaun Fensom, Blake Ferguson (2)
Conversions: Jarrod Croker (3/3)

LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary Full time in the Toyota Cup, the Cowboys defeated the Raiders 42-12. The scoring started and finished with Wayne Ulugia for the Cowboys, also Michael Parker Walshe scoring a HAT-TRICK for NQ.

Kick off moments away, Canberra Raiders are out onto the field now, Cowboys soon to follow
1 min: Kick off though Sam Williams for the Raiders at Dairy Farmers Stadium, time on with referee Gavin Badger in control.
1 min: Cowboys, get the ball away on the 4th tackle, Matt Bowen looking for a 40/20. raiders with the ball
2 min: Matt Bowen looking for hole, Penalty to the Cowboys against Bronson Harrison for holding on
3 min: Looking for the line. Kick through the line on the last tackle from Thompson chasing through ball goes dead. Raiders back on the attack.
4 min: Change over for the Raiders, sub in Halfback Sam Williams kicking high, coming down to Croker, held up in goal. 10m restart for the Cowboys. No score
8 min: TRY
Lovely bust from Aaron Payne, Jt in the action got it away to Dallas Johnston looking for the line, but pulled down before the line. Kick to the corner from Ray Thompson finding Winterstein to collect his first in the Cowboys colours.
North Queensland Cowboys 6-0
8 min: Kick off at the restart. Penalty Cowboys, Raiders kicking out on the full over the dead ball line. Penalty on halfway
9 min: Video Referee Decision says NO TRY. Kalifa Fai-Fai Loa leaping into the corner looking for the line, hitting the post in mid-air.
10 min: Good attacking set from the Raiders, Jarrod Croker looking for a hole with a little grubber, too much on it, goes dead. Cowboys get the 20m tap.
12 min: Raiders' Jarrod Croker in the action again, running down the line, kicking chip over the top, out on the full. Cowboys back on the attack, 40m out from Raiders line.
13 min: Matt Bowen trying his chance with the boot, putting a grubber through the line. Raiders come with a 20m tap after it went dead. Raiders on the 40m
14 min: Lot of kicking style in his match. Both sides trying to punch through with kicks. The kick from Glen Buttriss too big. Cowboys. Thruston going for a run.
15 min: Penalty Cowboys. Play on though Matt Scott, after Raiders lying in the ruck
16 min: TRY
Spreading the ball wide the Cowboys looking for a hole. Spinning after some short running at the line. Defender Josh McCrone. Joel Thompson is down for the Raiders in the in-goal area after colliding with teammate Blake Ferguson. He seems okay a little water over the head and will remain on the field. Beautiful curving ball from JT to come just inside the right upright.
North Queensland Cowboys 12-0
17 min: Penalty again Raiders. Dane Tilse was offside at the kick. Another miss restart from the gone wrong for the Canberra side. Cowboys on the attack 30m from Raiders line.
18 min: Looking for a try, Bolton looking for the line. Josh McCrone assisting him to lose the ball. NO TRY. Raiders back on the attack.
20 min: Penalty for a high shot from Dane Tilse. Tough call to raiders. Cowboys back into 20m zone.
21 min: TRY
Thurston kicking again, not the best, ref ruled not played at, that from a wide long pass from the sideline by Fai-Fai Loa. Hall holding the ball tight to score just outside the right post. Easy conversion in front for JT.
North Queensland Cowboys 18-0
24 min: First time tonight, Raiders successfully kick off at the restart. Cowboys working the ball up, very strong attack. Raiders slowing up in the opening 24 minutes.
24 min: A well deserved break, Bowen looking to the touch and he finds it, Scrum feed to Raiders. 20 metres from their line.
24 min: Penalty to Raiders. Plays held away from the ball. They go on the attack. 10 metres out.
25 min: Video Referee Decision. Looking at a try to Blake Ferguson. He bounces the ball on the ball. fingertips. Replay now. Possible try at the moment.
27 min: TRY
Video Referee rules Try Benefit of the Doubt. Spreading it wide from the play of the ball. Ferguson, fighting to find the line beating the tackle of 4 cowboys would-be defenders. Lovely kick from the sideline.
North Queensland Cowboys 18-4
28 min: Cowboys completing their set, kicking it away down field. Raiders looking to fight out of their half.
28 min: Quick play of the ball in this set as the Cowboys. Interchange: Aaron Payne off, 14. James Segeyaro comes on for the Cowboys.
31 min: JT looking for a 40/20, well outside the 40m line. Scrum feed to Raiders now. They fight out of their 30m zone here. David Shillington comes off for the Raiders.
34 min: Video Referee Decision coming for Johnathan Thurston. Soccer like style here. Possible knock on. Referee "check everything"
34 min: TRY
Soccer Style here from JT. Referee calling knock on, but ignored, Raiders plays all stopping. Easy try for JT, very lucky. Should of been playing to the whistle. I think he might of knocked on. Adding the extras 10m outside the left upright.
North Queensland Cowboys 24-6
36 min: Knock on. Lovely outside pass to Fai-Fai Loa from Matt Bowen as he found some space after getting away from a Raiders' would-be defender, not collected, Raiders scrum feed. They attack 20m out from Cowboys line.
37 min: Raiders losing the ball, 10m out from the line. Cowboys back with the ball. They are up to the 40 m line. on 3rd tackle. PENALTY now, strip now against the Raiders. They will kick for touch as they go searching for the line.
39 min: Well, that was great running from Raiders. Matt Bowen losing the ball, Harrison picks up the mess of the ball. Zero tackle and Blake Ferguson running from the pass, but forced into touch. Scrum feed for Cowboys. 40Mts from their own line.
40 min: Half Time. Ball grounded by Jarrod Croker at the end of the set. Matt Bowen involved heavily in that set, his magic shined stepping around defenders looking for runners offloads before being wrapped up.
Half time at Dairy Farmers Stadium. North Queensland Cowboys the standout side in the opening half, Raiders had their chances but losing them to errors or being forced into touch. Matt Bowen and Thurston being heavily in the action through the half.
41 min: Kick off. Time back with referee Gavin Bagder in the match between the Cowboys and the Raiders for the second half. Word from Neil Henry to the Cowboys is to be patient in the 2nd half and remember last week.
41 min: James Segeyaro quick up out of the line. forcing the error, knock on against the Raiders. Scrum feed Cowboys. Raiders failing to complete their first set of the 2nd half.
43 min: Matt Bowen getting the ball on the last away to Dallas Johnston, change over to the Raiders. on the 3rd tackle. Josh McCrone looking for a 40/20, Bowen not giving it a chance. Another Penalty to the Cowboys. Count at 7-2, Lying on the player again. Raiders need to pick it up, as Cowboys back on the attack.
45 min: JT knocks on the ball on the 5th Tackle, attempting to get the kick away, slipping from the hands. Change over to the Raiders. They work the ball away from the 20m line, lovely work from Cowboys.
46 min: Great run from the kick by Fai-Fai Loa, running sideways being getting away from one and then another before being tackled.
47 min: A Better set from the Raiders. Williams putting up the high kick, straight down to Matt Bowen, as the Cowboys will met the defence inside their 20m line.
48 min: Another penalty to the Cowboys. David Shillington putting a late hit on the kicker, Matt Bowen. Raiders getting the warning for the high penalty count. 8-2 to Cowboys.
50 min: A mixed set from the Cowboys. Attacking inside the Raiders 10m zone. Side to side footy here. Possession 60% Cowboys 40% Raiders. Knock on at the end of that set, Raiders scrum feed, away with Blake Ferguson.
51 min: Cowboys give away their third penalty for a high tackle against Ashton Sims. Raiders looking for the line in this set, 40mts from the Cowboys line.
52 min: Video Referee Decision Pending for Raiders. Knock on maybe.
53 min: TRY
Jarrod Croker going up high into the air from a Williams kick, Video Referee awarded the try to Shaun Fensom. Cowboys defence weaker in that set. The ball back from Croker to the ground being poped up to the lock forward.
North Queensland Cowboys 24-12
54 min: Penalty Raiders. Offside Matt Bowen the offender. The Raiders go on the attack through Shillington. 10m from the Cowboys line.
56 min: Knock on against Shillington, the referee's not happy with the reaction from Shillington, JT may of got a hand to it. Penalty from that and marched 10 for the pleasure of blowing up at both referees. 9-4 the count
57 min: Zero Tackle Cowboys, 10mts from their line. Knock on Raiders. Williams completing the set with a high kick, play on the call.
59 min: Raiders lucky in that one, Could of been a knock on against the Raiders. play on the call. Raiders looking for the line, with Josh McCrone, but 5th tackle change over, Cowboys working the ball away now inside their 20m zone.
60 min: Cowboys James Segeyaro knocks on. Scrum feed Raiders. They look for the line again, they have the roll to score after another mistake from Cowboys.
62 min: On the back of the scrum from the Cowboys knock on. Cowboys defuse the situation. Blake Ferguson had the chance at the line. didn't get close. As early in the set Cowboys Bowen kick it away down field. Raiders up to Halfway. 3rd Tackle.
62 min: Great work from Raiders looking for a try again. Blake Ferguson getting the inside ball from Fensom. But kick from Williams caught in goal by JT
63 min: Sam Williams in the bin for a professional foul, lying on the play. Fai-Fai Loa held down. Goodbye for 10 minutes. Raiders without their play maker. JT will take the 2 points.
65 min: PENALTY GOAL
After the professional foul against Sam Williams, penalty given for lying in the ruck too long. Jt kicks the goal in front to extend their lead.
North Queensland Cowboys 26-12
66 min: Scrum feed now, after Ah Mau losing the ball in a three man tackle. Raiders away from the scrum. attacking inside the Cowboys 40mts zone.
68 min: In their deseparation to find the line. Croker losing the ball in a hit up. Scrum Feed. but SCRUM PENALTY now. Jarrod Croker diving on the ball before it was out of the back. 11-4 the count.
69 min: Looking for the line break, but forgetting to catch the ball before running. Scrum feed to the Raiders. Error count 6-4 Cowboys. Raiders working the ball away from inside their own 30mts zone.
70 min: Zero tackle for the Raiders, looking for the line. Good attacking style. But stuck in the Cowboys 10mts zone.
70 min: Video Referee Decision. Looking at a possible try to Raiders. Diving over the line from Dumbie half. Red Lights for mine.
72 min: TRY
Josh McCrone off the tip of the foot, high into the in-goal area. Beating defenders, twisting mid-air around to crash over the line.
North Queensland Cowboys 26-18
74 min: Sam Williams returns back onto the field after 10 minutes to cool off in the sin bin. Player injured. Leg cramp. Cowboys playing the ball 40mts inside their half.
75 min: Ball knocked backwards Raiders. Josh McCrone cleans up the mess, 30mts from their line. Needing to work the ball and kick it away. Can still find back here. Matt Scott great work to defuse that situation, Raiders didn't get the kick away from McCrone. Well inside the half.
76 min: Time wasting maybe. Ray Thompson kicking the ball dead from the 20m line. over the dead ball line, Raiders 20m tap. 2nd tackle and up to the 40m line. Must complete this set.
77 min: Well, Matt Bowen great work. Raiders when on the attack, had the energy, Josh McCrone chipping over the line, caught and Daniel Vidot in the action for one of the few times tonight, but great work in defence from Bowen to slide him into touch.
78 min: Quick play from the Raiders. long passing across the face of the goal line. but defused by Thurston, pulls it out of the air and saves it for the Cowboys. They work it out of their side of the half. 40mts out.
80 min: Full Time at Dairy Farmers Stadium. Raiders attempted a fight back. Last attempt in the 2nd half, but the chip defused by Matt Bowen. Too much from the Cowboys at home tonight. Deserved win for the North Queensland side.
The Cowboys collect their 4th win in season 2011 in the NRL. Back-to-back wins at Dairy Farmers Stadium. Johnathan Thurston is my MAN OF THE MATCH, but in a close second was Matt Bowen. Raiders fight back was too late, Although a lot of errors coming in the 2nd half for the Cowboys. Raiders need to work on their penalty count. finishing with 11-4

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