PNG-born Clifford Beetham will start at five-eighth for the Toyota Cowboys for the first time in Monday night’s round five Toyota Cup clash with the Canberra Raiders at Canberra Stadium.
The 17-year-old former Cairns Brothers junior made his NYC debut off the bench for the Cowboys two weeks ago and will take over the No.6 jersey from Tennyson Elliott who will shift to lock as North Queensland tries to break a three-game losing streak.
Beetham’s inclusion sees Tom Hancock drop back to the interchange list with Damon Tauroa-Rauhihi the only omission from the squad that lost to Cronulla at the weekend.
Alex Elisala, who came off with an ankle injury, has been named at hooker and is expected to be okay to make the trip to the nation’s capital.
The Cowboys have slipped to 13th on the under-20s ladder, with Canberra just one place above them after four rounds.
The Raiders, who have won two from four, lost 40-10 to the Wests Tigers on Monday night after leading at the half-hour mark.
Monday’s match kicks off at 4.45pm.