Martin learning at feet of the master
TE Maire Martin’s mare has suddenly into every young maker’s dream.
On the outer at Penrith and languishing in reserve grade earlier this season, the 21- year- old is now getting midgame tips from Cowboys champion Johnathan Thurston.
After Saturday’s 24- 12 home win over the Warriors, Martin revealed a few choice words from the four- time Dally M medallist helped his game after scores were deadlocked 12- all at halftime. nightturned play-
Thurston may be out for the year but Martin is downloading as much information from the superstar into his system as possible.
“Obviously he got injured and I got my time before I thought I would, but he’s still around and helping me out,” Martin said.
“He had a little chat to me at halftime and after the game. I think he’ll be sick of me asking questions soon.
“You’ve got Greeny ( coach Paul Green) there too who was a really good halfback, and they’ve both got a good mind for the game.
“If I can take on as much as I can it can only improve me as a playmaker.”
Asked what words of wisdom Thurston offered at the break, Martin said: “Just about short sides and trying to get involved more. That if they’ve got numbers on the short side, to roll around and be an extra number on the open side.
“It’s stuff I didn’t think about too much but it makes a lot of sense.”
Ironically Kiwi interna- tional Martin could have been playing against the Cowboys on Saturday after attracting strong interest to return to his homeland from the Warriors.
But the Cowboys swooped late to get their man and Martin is now preparing to play semi- final football.
“I’m grateful I had a few choices to make but the Cowboys was the better option for me,” Martin said.
“To have Johnathan Thurston here, the best half in the world, to learn from was only going to make my game better.
“I was thinking about the future at the time with my manager and it seemed to be the best decision.
“It ( stint in Penrith’s re- serve grade team) made me end up here, so I’m thankful that happened.”
The Cowboys have adopted a simple attacking style since Thurston was ruled out for the season with a shoulder injury, which has helped Martin adjust quicker.
“It is ( helping), everyone knows their role and what to do,” Martin said.
“I’m slowly getting the drift of it all and understanding how the game plan works. I’m really enjoying it.”
The fifth- placed Cowboys have won four straight without Thurston, but their quest for a top four spot becomes more difficult with clashes against heavyweights the Roosters, Storm, Panthers and defending premiers the Sharks.