'Next man up' mentality for Cowboys
The North Queensland Cowboys have confidence in their 'next man up' mentality after a host of injuries have resulted in inconsistent performances in recent weeks.
After being seemingly ambushed by a fast-starting Wests Tigers side at 1300SMILES Stadium on Saturday night, three rounds after the Manly Sea Eagles beat them at the same venue, the situation is looking anything but certain for the Cowboys.
Despite these poor games, and a poor defensive display in their victory over the Gold Coast Titans, the Cowboys are still four wins from six games.
It's an impressive display of depth that they're even in the top eight given the absence of a winger, a centre and half of their spine. But that will be tested further in coming weeks with co-captain and Queensland State of Origin representative Johnathan Thurston set to spend some time on the sidelines as well.
The attitude of the players is the most obvious sign of how a team that has been so heavily hit by injuries can be doing so well. Whether that attitude remains after the loss of Shaun Fensom and Thurston remains to be seen, but the players seemed confident in whoever would step up when they spoke to the media after the game on Saturday night.
Ethan Lowe, who's been moved from second row, to lock and even out to the centres due to injuries, spoke about the dedication of getting the job done on Saturday night.
"It's one of those things you have to deal with, it's rugby league, injuries happen. We've had a few this year, we've handled them ok most of the time, so it's a next man up mentality, whoever steps into the role we know is going to do a good job," Lowe said.
"Hopefully we get a few troops back this week and we'll move on… see what we can do better and we'll work on that."