Cowboys luck to face Foran: Green

Usually rival NRL coaches would shudder at the thought.

But North Queensland mentor Paul Green considers the Cowboys lucky to be the first team to face Kieran Foran’s long awaited pairing with Corey Norman.

New Eels captain Foran finally looks set to make his club debut and link with Norman for the first time after the Kiwi playmaker was named for Parramatta’s Saturday night home clash with North Queensland.

Foran missed their NRL season opening loss to Brisbane due to a niggling hamstring complaint.

Norman has also been named by the Eels despite sustaining a first half neck injury against the Broncos.

Rather than rue his luck after the star halves were named, Green reckoned the Cowboys’ timing could not have been better.

“In a way we are lucky getting them when we are,” Green said.

“Because those combinations will only get better as the year progresses and the more time they spend with each other.

“But in saying that they are both capable players.

“We will have our hands full dealing with them this week.”

Green admitted Foran’s injection ensured he had no idea of what to expect from Parramatta.

The Cowboys mentor conceded little could be gained from viewing their first round match, such was the impact of Foran’s selection.

“There is not a lot we can take out of that game (against Brisbane),” he said.

“With Kieran Foran and Corey Norman playing together in the halves I think that will change their quality.”

Green said Norman’s early departure against the Broncos had also not helped his pre-game research.

“He only played half a game last week, to have them both out on the paddock will change a fair bit about how they play,” he said.

Foran will test his hamstring later in the week but he appears on a collision course with Golden Boot winner Johnathan Thurston in a heavyweight halfback showdown.

“He’s been a great player for Manly for a number of years and he’s played well at Test level,” Green said of Foran.

“He will make a huge difference, and he will make the players around him better.”

But Green warned the Cowboys also had plenty to improve on despite launching their title defence with a hard fought win over Cronulla.

“We need to be good in the early part of the season in defence – it’s an important part of our game,” he said.

“And maybe a bit of polish on our attack.”

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