Mor­gan draw­ing high praise as best in game

NT News - - NRL - MATT EN­CAR­NA­CION

NORTH Queens­land star Michael Mor­gan has sur­passed Johnathan Thurston and Cameron Smith to be the NRL’s best player at the mo­ment, ac­cord­ing to Syd­ney Roost­ers coach Trent Robin­son.

At least that’s what he told Roost­ers icon Brad Fit­tler, who re­vealed Robin­son la­belled Mor­gan the game’s pre-em­i­nent su­per­star even be­fore the Cow­boys’ 24-16 semi-fi­nal win over Par­ra­matta.

A week af­ter nail­ing an ex­tra-time field goal in an elim­i­na­tion fi­nal against Cronulla, Mor­gan spear­headed the Cow­boys into the fi­nal four with a try and try as­sist against the Eels on Satur­day.

Now Robin­son has to fig­ure out how to shut down the Queens­land State of Ori­gin rep­re­sen­ta­tive and Test util­ity, when his Roost­ers host the Cow­boys in Satur­day’s pre­lim­i­nary fi­nal in Syd­ney.

Fit­tler ad­mit­ted writ­ing off the Townsville-based club, when cham­pion play­maker Thurston joined co-cap­tain Matt Scott on the side­line with a sea­son-end­ing in­jury in July.

How­ever, he said a re­vi­talised Mor­gan has con­vinced him other­wise.

“I think play­ers im­prove, you im­prove as you get older and learn a few things. But Michael Mor­gan’s changed.

“He’s a changed per­son,” Fit­tler said.

“Re­mem­ber when he used to be a quiet, shy, hum­ble bloke? But he just turned into an ab­so­lute leader. He’s just nail­ing the moments, and he’s not miss­ing at all.

“I was talk­ing to Trent Robin­son and he said Michael Mor­gan’s the best player in the comp. That was be­fore the game – that’s a fair wrap.”

The Roost­ers have en­joyed the week off af­ter win­ning the qual­i­fy­ing fi­nal against Bris­bane. They will again be home at Al­lianz Sta­dium to host the Cow­boys.

Fit­tler sug­gested the Roost­ers could get the Cow­boys on the edges.

“You just need your stars to step up.

“I think the Roost­ers have (them),” he said.

“I think you’ve got La­trell Mitchell and (Luke) Keary, you need to get them ball and peo­ple on the edges.

“(Cow­boys cen­tre Kane) Lin­nett and that are do­ing a great job, but they’re not that su­per fast so you’ve got to some­how find them out.”

Pic­ture: ZAK SIM­MONDS

Michael Mor­gan meets fans as the North Queens­land Cow­boys re­turn to Townsville af­ter their win against the Par­ra­matta Eels

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