Morgan needs more ball: Thurston

Don’t blame yourself, blame us.

North Queensland co-captain Johnathan Thurston is unsure why pivot Michael Morgan is beating himself up over his finals form, saying the rest of the team are simply not giving him enough ball.

Morgan has all but taken last week’s 16-12 NRL finals loss to Brisbane personally after a quiet return from a three week ankle injury.

Morgan was down on himself again at the Cowboys’ media session in Townsville ahead of Saturday night’s must-win NRL semi-final against Cronulla, saying his “poor” display did not provide enough support for playmaker Thurston against Brisbane.

But Thurston said it was up to the rest of the team to get damaging five-eighth Morgan’s hands on the ball more this weekend if they were to keep their maiden premiership hopes alive.

“I think he is a bit disappointed in the way that he played (but) it was his first game back in nearly a month and we all know what Morgs can do,” Thurston said.

“He will be better for the run. We expect him to fire this weekend – we need him to.

“He’s exciting to watch with the ball in his hands and we need to provide that for him.”

Cowboys coach Paul Green was also scratching his head over Morgan’s remorse.

“I don’t know, there was no blame put on anyone,” he told Fox Sports TV.

“As a team they were all pretty disappointed.

“We probably felt we let an opportunity go against the Broncos, if we had taken our chances the result may have been different.

“That’s probably more what Morgo is referring to.

“And that was his first game back from injury. He will be better for the run.”

Still, nothing seemed to appease a regretful Morgan ahead of this weekend’s must win semi-final in what is expected to be a sellout home crowd.

Queensland Origin utility Morgan was still ruing crucial moments in their finals loss to Brisbane, namely his two key passes that were intercepted by the Broncos with the Cowboys on the attack.

“I was extremely disappointed with a couple of parts of my game,” Morgan said.

“That pass that (Brisbane pivot Anthony) Milford knocked down, if that comes off it’s a try in the corner.

“And in the second half we were getting through our set and I went to pass and got a knock down in a crucial moment of the game.

“It just goes to show how important those moments have been.

“But I don’t think I have to change anything (with my game).”

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