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NRL: Cowboys head to Panthers’ fortress

With Penrith Panthers winning 14 of their last 16 home games, North Queensland Cowboys will know they’ll need to produce something special to head back to Townsville with the points on Sunday.

Failing to win at Penrith Stadium since 2016, this has not been a happy hunting ground for the Cowboys over the years.

Both teams will be assessing their State of Origin reinforcements, with just three full days to recover from Game Two at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Wednesday night.

With 1.91 available for the Panthers with -13.5 in the Line market, the Cowboys will need to produce one of their performances of the season to overcome the reigning NRL champions.

. What: Penrith Panthers v North Queensland Cowboys
. Where: Penrith Stadium, Penrith
. When: 16:05 (AEST), Sunday 30th June 2024
. How to watch: Kayo, Foxtel, Channel 9
. Odds: Penrith Panthers 1.19, North Queensland Cowboys 4.75

Panthers challenging once again

Despite having playmaker Nathan Cleary sidelined for the past several weeks, the Panthers still find themselves in the mix at the top end of the NRL ladder.

Sat in second place and just two points off frontrunners Melbourne Storm going into this week’s fixtures, Penrith are ticking along nicely while their star players also juggle the rigours of Origin duties.

Ivan Cleary’s Origin representatives have been named to back up for the moment, while the Panthers will be boosted by the returns of hooker Mitch Kenny and five-eighth Jake Cole after the pair missed Round 15 due to respective quad issues.

Panthers winger Brian To’o has scored 23 tries in his past 17 games at home and is the 1.70 favourites to in the Anytime tryscorer market this weekend.

The Panthers have the strength in depth to cope with any potential dropouts from their Origin players and are understandably the 1.19 favourites to claim yet another win at fortress Penrith Stadium.

Cowboys should not be underestimated on the road

The Cowboys have made a habit of picking up some big scalps on the road this season, having recently won away at the South Sydney Rabbitohs, Sydney Roosters and the Canberra Raiders.

North Queensland have taken a different approach after Origin II and all of their stars will be rested for this game, making the challenge even greater for the visitors at Penrith.

Jeremiah Nanai has a calf issue and will be one of the stars not to feature but there is positive news regarding Jordan McLean, who has recovered from his own calf injury to play in the pack on Sunday.

Cowboys winger Kyle Feldt needs just one try this weekend to reach 10 tries for the ninth straight season and he’s 2.25 to touchdown anytime against the Panthers in this one.

North Queensland have impressed at times on the road this year and are 4.75 to cause their biggest upset away from their Townsville home this season at Penrith.

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