FULL TIME at 1300 Smiles Stadium - The Cowboys send their fans home with smiles after a 24-12 victory over the Dragons in wet conditions.
Gareth Widdopp converts from the sideline
Jordan Pereira scores a try down the left as the Dragons score off a scrum.
Jordan Kahu converts and pushes the margin out to 18 with 2:38 left
And that should wrap the game up for the Cowboys, Michael Morgan sees a gap in the Dragons line and kicks through the line and Justin O'Neill gets there and scores
Tariq Sims has the line open and a try at his begging and he drops the ball. He protests Ben Cummins call but naturally doesn't win.
The rain has returned big time in Townsville as the Dragons have a scrum 15m out from the Cowboys line.
Jordan Kahu converts from next to the posts
WOW... WOW... WOW... Jordan McLean gets a cracking offload away to Jason Taumalolo who used his speed to get through 1 on 1 with Widdop but Te Maire Martin backs up and scores
Gavin Cooper finds touch with a kick inside the Dragons 10
The Cowboys starting to gain the ascendancy in this one as the Dragons struggle to get out of their own half.
Te Maire Martin has his first conversion attempt in the NRL and stabs it across the face of goals.
Oh Captain! John Asiata takes a run through the middle, holds the ball up and gets a good pass to Michael Morgan who has a 1 on 1 with Gareth Widdop and despite a valiant effort from Widdop, Morgan gets to the line.
Jordan Kahu off the field for a HIA
The Cowboys make good metres through the middle in their set and on tackle 3 the Dragons struggle to the 30m line in the set
Time out as both Frizell and Kahu hit each other in uncomfortable areas, Kahu hit on the chin and Tyson Frizell is hit in the one place a gentleman should not be hit in.
PENALTY COWBOYS: Cam McInnes kicks out of dummy half for Tyson Frizell who was already in front of McInnes when he kicked it.
Another error inside their own 10 from the Cowboys - Dragons on the attack and need to capitalise.
The penalty for the quick tap went against Josh McGuire for a shoulder charge on Lawrie
WOW!! Blake Lawrie takes a quick tap and gets over the line but some great work from Kahu holds him up.
Second half is go in Townsville. The players return to dry weather however during the half the weather got very wet
HALF-TIME at 1300 Smiles Stadium and the Cowboys take an 8-6 lead into the break thanks to two late tries to Javid Bowen and Nene Macdonald
Jordan Kahu from the opposite touchline to his first pushes it across the face
Nene McDonald gets one against his old team as he gets the ball and goes out to the left and goes down towards the corner and scores. The bunker needed to confirm an obstruction and touchline. They gave it the all clear
Morgan kicks wide out to Bowen who taps it back and Aitken knocks on
Gareth Widdop ruled to have knocked the ball on by Ben Cummins... The Cowboys with all the momentum now.
Jordan Kahu can't convert from the sideline
Javid Bowen gets the opening try of the season for the Cowboys, A good play set up the tackle before by Jason Taumalolo bursting through. Bowen got the ball and it looked like he lost it live but the bunker cleared it.
To the @NRLBunker we go... The Cowboys have crossed but the ruling from Ben Cummins is NO TRY. Checking touchline and grounding.
The rain has arrived in Townsville in a big way.
PENALTY DRAGONS: The Cowboys attack goes astray again as Coen Hess goes through but stops in the line and denies the Dragons tacklers a chance.
The Dragons handing the ball back to the Cowboys in good field position as Ravalawa drops it
And play breaks down... Jake Granville again goes out to the left towards John Asiata who knocks the ball on.
SIX AGAIN - Michael Morgan bombs high and it goes straight up and then somehow the Dragons knock it on and give the Cowboys six more
PENALTY DRAGONS: Michael Morgan runs behind his own player then puts in a kick but Ben Cummins calls it back for a penalty with the Cowboys gaining an advantage.
PENALTY COWBOYS: Nene McDonald tries to step through the defence but he cops a stray arm
ANOTHER error from the Dragons and now the Cowboys are back attacking.
Cowboys kick through the line but it has too much strength and the Dragons get a free ride from the 20m
Michael Morgan puts up a bomb that Widdop takes under no pressure before he gets hit hard by Justin O'Neill who forces the error
The Dragons are slicing through the Cowboys at the moment. The Cowboys have had the most of the ball but body language doesn't look good for the Cowboys
Gareth Widdop hits the ball well and it goes through the uprights from out to the right
COUNTER ATTACKING FOOTBALL AT IT'S BEST - The Cowboys try and play it cute with some out the back attack, the Cowboys cough up the ball, Dragons go on the attack and it ends with a Euan Aitken try after the Dragons centre got space out on the right.
Jake Granville throws a ball to Josh McGuire who drops a simple pass catch.
PENALTY COWBOYS: A sloppy pass from dummy half BUT Ben Cummins penalises the Dragons for being offside
Michael Morgan from inside the 40 has the distance and angle on the kick, Jordan Pereira gets to it but his foot is out when he touches it constituting the 40/20.
IN TOUCH - Justin O'Neill comes miles infield and the Dragons catch them napping but O'Neill does enough and helps to make the tackle that forces Mikaele Ravalawa into touch. Cowboys survive
REPEAT SET - Gareth Widdop kicks in behind the Cowboys defensive line into the ingoal and it forces Jordan Kahu to make a play and is tackled ingoal
The Cowboys take a run on the last tackle but the Dragons are waiting for it and they shut down the play instantly
A settled first set for the Cowboys as Michael Morgan kicks for the sideline and finds it
WE ARE GO! The Dragons kick-off and the Cowboys will use the ball first
And as per all games this weekend, we take a minute silence to remember the victims of the attack in Christchurch yesterday.
Dragons making their way out to 1300 Smiles Stadium - This game a big one for the Cowboys and the North Queensland Region on a whole after drought, cyclones and Floods all hitting during the off-season.
Referees & scorers:
Referees: Ben Cummins, Ziggy Przeklasa-Adamski
Touch Judges: Nick Morel, Todd Smith
Video Referee: Steve Chiddy, Ben Lowe
NORTH QUEENSLAND COWBOYS (24)
Tries: Michael Morgan, Javid Bowen, Nene Macdonald, Te Maire Martin, Justin O'Neill
Conversions: Jordan Kahu (2/4), Te Maire Martin (0/1)
ST GEORGE ILLAWARRA DRAGONS (12)
Tries: Euan Aitken, Jordan Pereira
Conversions: Gareth Widdop (2/2)