Cowboys corral crummy Canberra in the capital

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Canberra Raiders v North Queensland Cowboys

The Cowboys have comfortably dented the Raiders' form line tonight with a surprising 34-16 win at GIO Stadium in front of more than 9,000 fans.

When Canberra hosted North Queensland on a chilly Friday night, most were expecting them to win comfortably to supercharge their push for a top four spot. Ultimately, this could not have been further from reality, with the Cowboys putting up a stellar attacking display to win comfortably in the nations capital.

They stormed out of the blocks to take a 6-0 lead in only the ninth minute, through a Kyle Feldt try where Kasey Badger in the bunker had a lot to look at, but ultimately gave the all clear. Their next would come only five minutes later, but this time it was soft and uncontroversial, with second rower Heilum Luki breaking through a tackle and finding a hole in some week Raiders defence.

The onslaught from the boys up north continued, with halfback Chad Townsend coming up with a pinpoint kick to silence the critics and the home crowd as Jeremiah Nanai reminded everyone why he's Billy Slater's go to man come Origin by pouncing on the bouncing ball and making no mistake with the grounding. 20 minutes in, North Queensland were 18-0 up and racing the clock in what was a shock to everyone.

Although Canberra served up a tenacious ten-minute period to try and hold the Cowboys out, it was Kyle Feldt crossing for his second try of the match with a miraculous put down in the corner to further flatten the hopes of Ricky Stuart's men. With only a minute to go before the halftime break, Valentine Holmes tried for a two point ield goal to make it a 24-0 lead, but the shot went wide as the half time buzzer sounded.

It was the visitors yet again who took the lead after the break with Chad Townsend serving up another nice kick for marquee centre Valentine Holmes. It was 28-0 with only half an hour left to play, but Canberra responded in emphatic style with Jordan Rapana crossing to score only two minutes later, and dominated the proceeding 10 minute period with field position.
Despite their stronghold, Reece Robson came up with a line break inside his own half and after putting Scott Drinkwater away on the same play, got hit with a short ball and clear run to the line to score the try of the night against the run of play.

With nothing to lose, Canberra tried for a short drop out which proved successful, and the deal was only sweetened when a determined piece of play from Sebastian Kris put his winger in space to run and score. The Xavier Savage try made it 34-10 with 13 minutes to play, but Elliot Whitehead came up with a barnstorming run only three minutes later where he shrugged off Valentine Holmes to score.

The last 10 minutes was relatively uneventful, with the Raiders squandering numerous attacking chances and a Chad Townsend field goal attempt hitting the post and bouncing back into the field of play. Ultimately, it was the Cowboys who held on to win 34-16 in a relatively convincing display that will undoubtedly fill them with confidence.

Canberra Raiders 16 - North Queensland Cowboys 34

Venue: GIO Stadium Canberra, Bruce / Ngunnawal
Crowd: 9671
Halftime Score: Canberra Raiders 0 North Queensland Cowboys 22 Players of the Match:
3 points - Chad Townsend
2 points - Reuben Cotter
1 points - Reece Robson

Tries: Jordan Rapana, Xavier Savage, Elliott Whitehead
Field Goals:
Two Point Field Goals:
Conversions: Jordan Rapana (2/3)
Penalty Goals:

Tries: Kyle Feldt (2), Valentine Holmes, Heilum Luki, Jeremiah Nanai, Reece Robson
Field Goals: Chad Townsend (0/1)
Two Point Field Goals: Chad Townsend (0/0)
Conversions: Valentine Holmes (5/6)
Penalty Goals:

See how it happened in our Match Centre