This is the sixth article in a series naming each club’s best team of loyal stalwarts. Not necessarily just those one-club players but those who turned out for the club over a long period and helped build its success and culture.
North Queensland powerhouse Jason Taumalolo insists his huge performance against St George Illawarra is just the start of things to come this season.
He broke his own run metres record, busted six tackles and set up the match-sealing four-pointer in round one, but North Queensland lock Jason Taumalolo still isn’t content.
The former Dally M Medal winner was magnificent in the Cowboys’ 24-12 win over St George Illawarra in Townsville on Saturday but played down the significance of his round one display.
“I wouldn’t say it’s a statement it’s still round one, I got a bit lucky there but it would have been nice to score a try,” Taumalolo told AAP.
The Tongan captain was referring to the try he handed to five-eighth Te Maire Martin, when he had only Dragons Fullback Gareth Widdop to beat after already breaking three tackles.
“I thought about putting on a chip and chase but then didn’t want to get sprayed in the review on Monday.”
Taumalolo’s performance was the perfect way for Paul Green’s side to start their transition following the retirement of Johnathan Thurston.
The $10 million dollar man ran for 286 metres, beating his own previous personal best to take the Cowboys to a 24 -12 win.
The man who replaced the original “JT” in the No. 7 jersey, Michael Morgan was in awe.
“He was unreal, he is a very special player not just his work rate the things he can do in the open field,” Morgan said.
“For me I love sitting back and watching him go forward.”
Taumalolo’s new running partner Josh McGuire also did his part in the round one win; the ex-Bronco forward getting through 154 metres of his own.
A noted enforcer, McGuire’s happy he no longer has to get in front of Taumalolo, in a game situation at least.
“I don’t have to tackle him now!” McGuire laughed.
“But also I have to tackle him at training every week now, so it’s a glass half empty half full kind of thing.”
The Cowboys “bash brothers” will face a tough test this week when they come up against McGuire’s former side on Friday.