The Aquis Gold Coast Titans are at home to the North Queensland Cowboys this Saturday night and amazingly the match will be Johnathon Thurston's first in Cowboy colours at CBUS Super Stadium in more than 3 years.
Scott Prince remains the only NRL player to have represented all three Queensland teams! Kick-starting his career with the North Queensland Cowboys and coming through the Club’s junior development programs, Prince was lured south to the Broncos, signing with the Gold Coast Titans ahead of their debut season following a successful stint with the Wests Tigers.
Prince wasn’t the only Cowboys influence in the Titans inaugural teams, former NRL player and Cowboys strength and conditioning coach Billy Johnston set a high standard for the inaugural Titans squads, the uncompromising fitness guru returning to the Coast ahead of the Titans inaugural season.
In a stat which would trouble most trivia buffs, utility David Myles earned the honour of captaining the very first Gold Coast Titans team when he led the Titans out against the Melbourne Storm in a trial at Coffs Harbour after signing from the North Queensland Cowboys.
Clint Amos was another who ventured south looking for more game time, the hard-working Hooker competing with Nathan Friend for Hooking duties on the Gold Coast for almost three seasons.
Brenton Bowen, joined the Titans from the Cowboys following five seasons in the Far north, Bowen managing just 5 first team appearances for the Gold Coast before returning home to North Queensland.
New Zealand and Samoan international Kalifa Faifai Loa spent two powerful seasons on the Gold Coast, the barnstorming winger lured South by former Cowboys Coach Neil Henry himself a current Titan who has previously spent time in Townsville.
It hasn’t all been one way traffic with foundation Titan Gavin Cooper emerging as a mainstay of the Cowboys outfit in recent years. Dangerous when on his game and running off Prince during his time on the Gold Coast, Cooper these days forms a lethal on-field partnership with Johnathon Thurston and is most certainly one to watch this weekend.
Foundation Titans Coach John Cartwright, also travelled north after parting ways with the titans after 8 years in charge, collecting a premiership ring as Paul Green’s assistant in 2015.
The two sides have met on 17 occasions since 2007 With the Thurston led North Queenslanders holding a slender 9-8-win loss margin over the Gold Coast.
The Titans biggest winning margin over their most northern NRL rival is 19 points and they have achieved the margin on two separate occasions.
In Round 10 of the 2010 season, the Titans ran out 37-18 winners, over the North Queenslanders, achieving the nineteen point margin three years later when they downed the Cowboys 31-12 in their Round 12 battle.
30 points is the biggest winning margin by a Cowboys team over the Titans, Thurston and his troops routing the visitors by a whopping 42 points to 12 during the final regular season round of the 2015 competition, the Cowboys of course going on to claim the Premiership trophy in a thriller against the Broncos.