North Queensland’s mid-season resurgence has rolled on with a 31-6 defeat of a lacklustre South Sydney, who’re vulnerable to falling out of the NRL high eight by the tip of the State of Origin interval.
Scott Drinkwater and Valentine Holmes had been standouts for a affected person Cowboys facet that neutralised hazard man Cody Walker and known as the Rabbitohs’ premiership credentials into query.
For therefore lengthy related to high-octane soccer, the Rabbitohs fluffed their traces in assault on Sunday and desperately missed the spark of injured fullback Latrell Mitchell.
Mitchell is out with a calf criticism for a minimum of two extra video games and the Rabbitohs will want extra from Walker in assault if they’re to cease the rot.
Souths’ defence was their saving grace in a 5-0 first half however the Cowboys opened them up at will within the 10 minutes after the break.
Certainly one of seven Origin representatives backing up, Holmes scored in back-to-back units after Drinkwater and Jeremiah Nanai line breaks in raids that proved decisive.
The Rabbitohs have now conceded a median of just about 33 factors of their previous 5 video games.
The win caps a surprising turnaround for the Cowboys, who began the season with two wins from seven video games however have crushed heavyweights Melbourne, Penrith and Souths of their previous three matches.
The victory was the Cowboys’ first outdoors of Queensland this season and strikes them to inside putting distance of the highest eight.
Walker booted the ball lifeless twice within the first 10 minutes and when his cut-out move sailed previous Alex Johnston and into contact, the Cowboys had been in place to open the scoring after 31 minutes.
As if to taunt his reverse quantity, Cowboys five-eighth Tom Dearden despatched winger Murray Taulagi over with the identical cut-out move play Walker had been trying.
Like his halves associate, Souths halfback Lachlan Ilias struggled to evoke the Rabbitohs however did get his facet on the board from a scrum play within the 58th minute.
The sport was out of Souths’ attain when rookie teenager Kulikefu Finefeuiaki broke the road and crossed underneath the posts – one other beneficiary of Drinkwater’s ball-playing.
The win was the Cowboys’ first in opposition to South Sydney since 2017, breaking a seven-game shedding streak in opposition to the Rabbitohs.
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