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The Roosters Crow: Bringing the Magic to Brisbane

Magic Round returns to the NRL as the Sydney Roosters travel up to Brisbane to take on the North Queensland Cowboys in the main event on Saturday night in what is shaping up to be an old-fashioned saloon showdown.

Recent History: Sydney Roosters vs North Queensland Cowboys

The Roosters hold a strong record against the Cowboys, winning 27 of the 38 clashes (71%) played between the two clubs since North Queensland entered the competition in 1995.

Magic Round will mark the 39th clash between the sides, and the first in Brisbane, with all prior matches being played in either Sydney, Townsville, Darwin or Gosford.

The Tricolours claimed a commanding 42-16 victory in the last contest with the Cowboys, however, the results have been fairly evenly matched over the past decade, with the Roosters winning three of the last five matches and six of the last ten. 

Our opponents have been in a rich vein of form, bouncing back from a 0-4 start to the season to win four of their last five matches, which includes a one-point thriller against the Brisbane Broncos at Suncorp Stadium last week, so the Roosters will certainly have their hands full in this one. 

How They Line Up

Trent Robinson welcomes back five-eighth Lachlan Lam and second rower Sitili Tupouniua, who have both been named in the starting side. 

The Roosters backline remains intact from last week, headed by captain James Tedesco and featuring Daniel Tupou, Josh Morris, Joseph Manu and Matt Ikuvalu.

Team Lists


  • Fullback for Roosters is number 1 James Tedesco
    Fullback for Cowboys is number 1 Valentine Holmes
  • Winger for Roosters is number 2 Daniel Tupou
    Winger for Cowboys is number 2 Kyle Feldt
  • Centre for Roosters is number 3 Josh Morris
    Centre for Cowboys is number 3 Javid Bowen
  • Centre for Roosters is number 4 Joseph Manu
    Centre for Cowboys is number 4 Connelly Lemuelu
  • Winger for Roosters is number 5 Matt Ikuvalu
    Winger for Cowboys is number 5 Murray Taulagi
  • Five-Eighth for Roosters is number 6 Lachlan Lam
    Five-Eighth for Cowboys is number 6 Scott Drinkwater
  • Halfback for Roosters is number 7 Sam Walker
    Halfback for Cowboys is number 7 Jake Clifford


  • Prop for Roosters is number 8 Jared Waerea-Hargreaves
    Prop for Cowboys is number 8 Coen Hess
  • Hooker for Roosters is number 9 Ben Marschke
    Hooker for Cowboys is number 9 Reece Robson
  • Prop for Roosters is number 10 Isaac Liu
    Prop for Cowboys is number 10 Jordan McLean
  • 2nd Row for Roosters is number 11 Angus Crichton
    2nd Row for Cowboys is number 11 Shane Wright
  • 2nd Row for Roosters is number 12 Sitili Tupouniua
    2nd Row for Cowboys is number 12 Mitchell Dunn
  • Lock for Roosters is number 13 Victor Radley
    Lock for Cowboys is number 13 Jason Taumalolo


  • Interchange for Roosters is number 14 Adam Keighran
    Interchange for Cowboys is number 14 Jake Granville
  • Interchange for Roosters is number 15 Daniel Suluka-Fifita
    Interchange for Cowboys is number 15 Lachlan Burr
  • Interchange for Roosters is number 16 Nat Butcher
    Interchange for Cowboys is number 16 Francis Molo
  • Interchange for Roosters is number 17 Siosiua Taukeiaho
    Interchange for Cowboys is number 20 Tom Gilbert


  • Reserve for Roosters is number 21 Joseph Suaalii
    Reserve for Cowboys is number 17 Ben Condon

Match Officials

  • Referee: Ben Cummins
  • Touch Judge: Belinda Sharpe
  • Touch Judge: Dave Munro
  • Senior Review Official: Henry Perenara

Last updated:

Halfback Sam Walker lines up alongside Lam for the first time, while Isaac Liu, Ben Marschke and Jared Waerea-Hargreaves make up the front row once again.

Victor Radley has passed his HIA protocols, taking his place alongside Tupouniua and Angus Crichton at the back of the scrum.

Adam Keighran, Daniel Suluka-Fifita, Nat Butcher and Siosiua Taukeiaho have been named on the interchange bench, while Naufahu Whyte, Tuku Hau Tapuha, Egan Butcher and Joseph Suaalii round off the extended bench. 

For the Cowboys, the likes of Valentine Holmes, Kyle Feldt, Scott Drinkwater and Jason Taumalolo all loom as threats, with Holmes and Taumalolo sealing last week's match for the Cowboys with a field goal and try respectively in the dying stages.

Key Matchup: Daniel Tupou vs Kyle Feldt 

The two wingers with the best aerial skills in the game will meet as Daniel Tupou and Kyle Feldt face off in what is an intriguing match-up.

Both acrobatic in the air, Tupou and Feldt are two wingers that have experience, Premiership rings and are fan favourites for their respective clubs. 

So far in 2021, Tupou has trumped Feldt in average run metres (189 to 121) and linebreaks (6 to 2) while the pair are tied for tries scored with a treble each.

It is important, however, to note that Tupou has also played more games than Feldt so far (9 to 7), but there's no doubt that both wingmen have been in top form, particularly over the last month.

While there is plenty of talent on show for both teams, make sure to keep an eye on the Roosters' left side as these two flyers line up on Saturday night. 

What They Said

"We know that whoever is going to come into our team is going to do a good job for us and there’s no excuses. Yes, we have lost a lot of guys to injuries but we haven’t looked back on that, we’re taking it week to week." - James Tedesco

"I’m grateful to be wearing the no.9 and I take pride in that each week when I go out there. I’ve got pretty big shoes to fill with Sammy and Friendy going so I’m just looking to do my best." - Ben Marschke

"It’s about us continuing to play with the spirit we’ve been playing with and then layering on better decisions and more quality week-on-week. We want to continue to see that on Saturday." - Trent Robinson

Your Verdict

While history has favoured the Roosters, our opponents this week will be riding a wave of momentum into Brisbane, but if there's anything you can guarantee, it's that the boys from Bondi will be up for the fight. 

Make sure you grab your tickets here, and if you can't make the game be sure to head down to Artie's to watch the boys in Red, White and Blue do battle in what will be another thriller!