North Queensland Cowboys legend Johnathan Thurston has been honoured with a statue out the front of the club’s new home ground however the bronzed version of JT could use some company, one player, in particular, comes to mind.
Matthew Bowen made his debut for the Cowboys in round one of the 2001 NRL season against the Brisbane Broncos in a losing effort and would score his first try eight weeks later against the Raiders.
That try would be the first of 130 the 37-year-old would score in 270 games for North Queensland, not to mention 4 tries in 10 games for Queensland and rep honours for Australia and the Indigenous All-Stars.
While Bowen would have a stint at the end of his career playing for the Wigan Warriors in the Super League he would never play for any NRL club other than his beloved Cowboys.
He was the Dally M Fullback of the year in 2007, the Cowboys Player of the Year and the Players Player of the Year in 2007, he is a Cowboy’s life member and was picked in their 10th and 20th Anniversary teams.
It’s safe to say that the boy from Cairns known as Matthew Jeremy Bowen deserves a statue out the front of the Queensland Country Bank Stadium.