South Sydney Rabbitohs vs North Queensland Cowboys: Five things we learned

The Rabbitohs have broken a 29 year old record by winning eight straight against the Cowboys in Cairns.

  1. 1 Cowboys lack killer instinct

    Whether it be in attack or defence the Cowboys lacked that killer instinct to pounce on a try-scoring opportunity or muscle up defensively when it counted. A try right on the stroke of half-time resulting from a poor read and the Bunnies were back in the game, down by just two. The Cowboys just had to defend for sixty seconds before receiving a fifteen minutes break at half-time and yet the defence couldn't hold up. Defend that set and the Cowboys go in eight points up. 

    Whilst the attack was much improved from recent weeks it still lacked punch and a finishing polish as the North Queensland side toiled away at the Rabbitohs defence. The Cowboys were breaking the defensive line however their support play wasn't up to standard and there was too much drop ball throughout the match, anyway. A side capable of so much more it is a similar story to their 2006 season now. 

  2. 2 Rabbitohs break a 29 year old record

    The Rabbitohs went into this match on a seven-game winning streak needing just one more victory to achieve eight straight wins in the regular season, and in doing so break a 29-year-old record. It was far from guaranteed with the Cowboys and in particular Thurston in the mood early on laying on two tries off beautifully weighted kicks. 

    The Rabbitohs second half was much more disciplined and despite being below their best they came away with the two points and the record, thanks to an Adam Reynolds field goal from 35m out. 

  3. 3 Cowboys season officially over

    Mathematically the Cowboys win yesterday and they would have been a slender chance still of making the finals, think Parramatta Eels in 2009 it wasn't impossible. However with that loss and now a total of 26 competition points their highest possible points tally possible their season is finished. 

    The Sharks and Broncos pushed further ahead of the chasing pack on the weekend and so Thurston's final season will not end with another ring on his finger. They may have won every game and still not made it, however, the opportunity is no longer presented to them. 

  4. 4 Rabbitohs lose their courageous captain

    In the last year Greg Inglis has come back from a season-ending ACL injury, captained the Rabbitohs to second on the table and led his beloved Maroons into battle. As the Maroons prepared to name Inglis as captain for the third and final Origin game of this year's series news filtered through that he had broken his finger and was no longer fit to play.

    A return date of Round 23 has been penciled in and whilst the Rabbitohs have depth in their backline, the inspirational skipper will be needed back on board as soon as possible, for their first serious premiership push since claiming the 2014 premiership. 

  5. 5 Obstruction rule is still blurred

    In the 15th minute Adam Reynolds strolled through a massive gap in the Cowboys on line defence. On further reviewing it appeared as if George Burgess may have obstructed Granville in the lead up. The key being that Burgess wasn't looking at where he was running and Granville was given little time to adjust and get out of the way of Burgess to tackle Reynolds. However Granville did as the bunker ruled initiate contact and thus the try was given.

    The entire Channel Nine team was in agreement with the bunkers decision however it was a different story on Fox with Greg Alexander and Warren Smith in disbelief when the try was awarded. It serves as another reminder the referees don't know what to call, and once instructed on what to do, they confidently remonstrate the rules to disbelieving captains questioning the very call the referees were unsure of themselves a minute ago. 

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