Morgan dismisses NRL fairytale talk

This ain’t no fairytale.

Hard work and a great coach have underpinned North Queensland’s unlikely surge into the NRL grand final, according to Cowboys halfback hero Michael Morgan.

Speaking from Sydney Airport on Sunday, a day after his side’s 29-16 upset of the Sydney Roosters, Morgan shed light on the Cowboys’ inspired run from eighth place into next weekend’s grand final against Melbourne.

The injury-riddled Cowboys scraped into the finals after Canterbury upset St George Illawarra in the last round before ending Cronulla’s title defence and also eliminating Parramatta and the Roosters to set up an improbable showdown with the Storm.

“We’ve worked hard while doing it, it hasn’t just been a big fairytale and things have just gone our way for no reason,” Morgan told Fox Sports.

“We have worked hard but we’ve been enjoying it at the same time.”

Missing star halfback Johnathan Thurston and prop Matt Scott, Morgan can’t praise coach Paul Green enough for what he’s done in the charge to the decider.

“He’s a great coach. I’ve learnt so much off him and I’m still learning … I’ve been coached by him now since 2014 when he got here. Every year I’ve continued to learn and develop my game and he’s been a massive influence on that,” he said.

“If ever there’s certain tips for a certain part of my game, whether it’s kicking, passing, running, he’s an extremely smart coach in the way he coaches and the mindset he gets his players in and deserves a lot of credit for what he done this year.”

As for Melbourne, Morgan is under no illusions about the task facing his side at ANZ Stadium.

“I think just try and limit their opportunities. They are going to get some and they’ll create their opportunities, they do that really well,” Morgan said.

“They are really good at breaking other teams down and dissecting other team’s games, so they can really stop what you’re doing.

“I think if you can go back at them just as hard defensively and try and limit their opportunities (that’s the key).”

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