Thurston in awe of magnificent Morgan

Superstar halfback Johnathan Thurston paid Michael Morgan the ultimate compliment after North Queensland’s new masterful No.7 delivered yet again to pilot the Cowboys into the 2017 NRL grand final.

An Immortal in waiting, Thurston says magnificent Morgan has taken his game to such spectacular heights that not even rugby league’s only four-time Dally M medallist can teach him any more.

“I’ve got nothing more to say to him now; he’s going that good,” Thurston told AAP after Morgan had a hand in three of the Cowboys’ four tries and nailed a late field goal to seal a 29-16 victory at Allianz Stadium.

The 25-year-old also opened the game with a rare 40-20 to set the tone on Saturday night.

“That’s one lad I’m extremely proud of,” Thurston said.

“I’ve seen him grow over the last four months. Ever since we came out of that Test side I’ve watched him evolve and been really excited about what he’s been able to do.

“He’s a real humble person. He doesn’t like the limelight and doesn’t like putting himself in this situation, but he’s really come of age while I’ve been sitting on the sidelines.”

The Cowboys were written off when Thurston was ruled out for the rest of the season in June to undergo shoulder surgery.

Thurston has no doubt his absence has allowed Morgan to become the complete package, with the Cowboys needing a new general to stand up with their season on the line.

“And that’s exciting for our club. As devastated as I am to be sitting on the sidelines, for our fans, our members, it’s an insight into the future of our club,” he said.

Thurston, though, insists Morgan is anything but an overnight sensation, saying he has always been a special talent.

“He did it in the (under) 20s playing halfback. Him playing fullback has been outstanding and helped his development,” he said.

“But I don’t have much to say to him now because he’s playing with a calmness that’s beyond his years.”

While the Cowboys – who were 100-1 long shots for the title after barely scraping into the play-offs – have shocked fans with their inspired run from eighth place to the grand final, Thurston is not the least bit surprised.

“I’ve seen what they do every day. Week in, week out,” he said.

“They’re having fun and they’re enjoying it.

“Just seeing them grow the last three weeks. Now it’s another beast coming up against the Storm.

“We’ll do video during the week and come up with a game plan and try and execute.”

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