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North Queensland Cowboys vs Melbourne Storm NRL Preview and Team News - Storm aiming for ninth consecutive win over Cowboys

Andrew Hendrie 10 Apr 2019
  • North Queensland Cowboys host Melbourne Storm in Round 5 of the NRL on Friday
  • Storm have won the last eight games between the sides
Cowboys face Storm on Friday

Melbourne Storm look to extend their unbeaten start to the season when they face the struggling North Queensland Cowboys in NRL Round 5 action on Friday night.

Melbourne Storm and North Queensland Cowboys clash in a rematch of the 2017 Grand Final on Friday night in Townsville.

These two teams have gone in totally opposite directions since that big showdown that Melbourne won 34-6 - the Cowboys have been languishing near the bottom of the ladder ever since, winning just eight games last season and going 1-3 to start 2019, while the Storm made another Grand Final in 2018 and are the only unbeaten side across the first four rounds this year.

Furthermore, Melbourne have won their last eight games against the Cowboys dating back to 2015 - and judging their respective performances to start this season, they are heavy favourites to make it nine on Friday night.

They’ve lost Billy Slater and Cooper Cronk over the last two seasons, but Melbourne still have Cameron Smith and Craig Bellamy steering the ship on and off the field, and as long as that partnership is intact, the Storm are always going to be a top four side.

Melbourne were somewhat fortunate to get out of jail against a rejuvenated Bulldogs outfit last week, recovering from 12-0 down to prevail 18-16, but you rarely see two sub-par performances from the Storm in a row - which is an ominous sign for North Queensland.

Defence has been the biggest issue for the Cowboys so far this season. They’ve played all four of their games in Queensland this year (three at home and the other in Brisbane), but they’ve conceded over 29 points in all three of their defeats.

That’s simply not going to cut it if you want to finish in the top eight.

With the Cowboys’ poor record against the competition leaders, it’s hard to see any way they can win on Friday night. Expect Melbourne to put together a more polished 80 minute this week and come away with another win.

Stats


  • Melbourne have won their last eight meetings
  • Storm have won three of their last four vs Cowboys by 13+
  • Cowboys have conceded 30 points in their last two losses at home

Teams


Cowboys: 1. Te Maire Martin 2. Nene Macdonald 3. Jordan Kahu 4. Enari Tuala 5. Ben Hampton 6. Jake Clifford 7. Michael Morgan 8. Matt Scott 9. Jake Granville 10. Jordan McLean 11. Gavin Cooper 12. Coen Hess 13. Josh McGuire 14. John Asiata 15. Corey Jensen 16. Mitchell Dunn 17. Francis Molo 18. Shane Wright 19. Justin O’Neill 20. Kurt Baptiste 21. Peter Hola

Storm: 1. Jahrome Hughes 2. Marion Seve 3. Will Chambers 4. Curtis Scott 5. Josh Addo-Carr 6. Cameron Munster 7. Brodie Croft 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Cameron Smith 10. Nelson Asofa-Solomona 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Kenneath Bromwich 13. Dale Finucane 14. Brandon Smith 15. Christian Welch 16. Tui Kamikamica 17. Ryan Papenhuyzen 18. Billy Walters 19. Patrick Kaufusi 20. Albert Vete 21. Sandor Earl

Tips



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North Queensland Cowboys vs Melbourne Storm NRL Preview and Team News - Storm aiming for ninth consecutive win over Cowboys

Melbourne Storm look to extend their unbeaten start to the season when they face the struggling North Queensland Cowboys in NRL Round 5 action on Friday night.

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