NRL Premiership 
- Round 01 
- North Queensland Cowboys V Cronulla Sharks 
- 05 March 2016 
- 1300 Smiles Stadium, Townsville, Qld 
- Scott Davis

The North Queensland Cowboys will head to Belmore on Thursday with plenty at stake, including a top four spot.

“It’s a big game and a top four spot is on offer for whoever wins it. Both teams have plenty to play for,” Coach Paul Green said before leaving Townsville.

The Cowboys will face the Bulldogs minus Sam Kasiano, after he pleaded guilty to a grade two dangerous contact - head/neck charge that will see him miss two matches.

The loss of Kasiano is a big blow for the home side, but he’s not the only threat within their forward pack.

“He’s a real handful for them and he gets a lot of their attack going, but there’s still plenty of other blokes to deal with in the forward pack like James Graham, David Klemmer, Tolman and on the edges they have Tony Williams and Greg Eastwood who are all threats.

“One less is probably a good thing, but we’ve still got plenty to deal with.”

DON'T MISS OUR ROUND 25 CLASH WITH THE COWBOYS AT BELMORE SPORTS GROUND

The battle of the forward packs will be a real highlight and earlier in the week Cowboys enforcer Jason Taumalolo said David Klemmer would be the target for the Cowboys players, but Green had his own views.

“Our game plan if you like is not to target Klemmer specifically.

“There are plenty of threats to deal with in their forward pack and then you have Josh Reynolds and Mbye, as well as the Morris boys to deal with.

“Targeting Klemmer is certainly not on our agenda, but we do have to deal with him and I think Jason’s (Taumalolo) comments were probably taken out of context.”

The Cowboys forward pack will be strengthened by the return of Matt Scott after he withdrew from last week’s win over the Warriors with a back injury.

“He probably could have played last week, but he would have been at a much greater risk of playing again given the short turn around and travel.

"I wanted to make sure he was fit and firing for this week"