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Morgan the game's best No.7: Cronk

Morgan the game's best No.7: Cronk
Storm halfback Cooper Cronk. Credit: Robb Cox. Copyright: NRL Photos.

Test halfback Cooper Cronk has declared NRL grand final opponent Michael Morgan has surpassed him on current form.

While Cronk is assured of wearing the Australian No.7 jumper at the upcoming World Cup, there's an argument to be made that Morgan has established himself as the form player of the finals series.

After North Queensland scraped into eighth spot, Morgan has fired them to an unlikely grand final berth which has shades of Jarryd Hayne rocketing Parramatta to the 2009 grand final.

Glad to have played some role in Morgan's rise, Melbourne halfback Cronk was comfortable to admit the Cowboys playmaker had taken his mantle as the game's best No.7.

"He's probably ahead of me at the moment," Cronk said on Monday.

"He's playing elite - there's no doubt about it.

"His fingerprints and influence on the game, along with a lot of other players, has driven North Queensland to the position they're in.

"So simple answer - he probably is (the best halfback in the NRL)."

Since co-captain Johnathan Thurston's season-ending shoulder injury, Morgan has stepped into the Cowboys primary playmaking role.

His evolution has been nothing short of a revelation and he this week admitted he had to "pull my finger out" after Thurston went down after State of Origin II.

Ironically, Cronk also had a role in Morgan's making as a playmaker after pulling him aside during Australian camp during the year.

Morgan described the heart-to-heart as a lightbulb moment and changed the way he thought about the game.

"I'd do it all over again," Cronk said.

"I like to think I help people in situations like that, I hope I help the young stars here at the Melbourne Storm.

"Whatever I said, honestly, it's minute compared to the work he's done along with Paul Green. Johnathan Thurston's probably had his fingerprints on his game plan and style.

"I haven't done much, he's done all of it."

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