Taumalolo wants redemption after Broncos flop
A FIRED up Jason Taumalolo has his sights on steamrolling the Storm after admitting he flopped in last week's derby loss to Brisbane.
Taumalolo is seeking redemption for two below-par performances which have irked North Queensland's powerhouse forward.
The 2016 Dally M Medal champion produced one of his quietest games of what was a sensational season in last year's 34-6 grand final loss to Melbourne.
Taumalolo, 24, was limited to just 104m in the premiership decider, well short of the 194m he averaged throughout a record-breaking 2017 season.
In last Friday's 24-20 derby loss to the Broncos, Taumalolo played 52 minutes, 11 minutes short of his 2017 average, and ran for 144m.
The quietly spoken Tongan Test star said he wanted to bounce back in tomorrow night's grand final rematch at AAMI Park.
"We were off as a team (against the Broncos) and personally it was a bit quiet for my standards," he said.
"I'm looking forward to having a big game on Thursday and hopefully making up for how I played last Friday. It wasn't up to my standards and how I normally play.
"I was one of those players that took a back seat. Hopefully I up my game and play a lot better."
Taumalolo featured in North Queensland's 2015 grand final win against the Broncos and took his game to another level the following season.
He was even better last year following co-captain Matt Scott's season-ending knee injury but was left wondering what could have been after the Cowboys were soundly beaten in the grand final.
"It wasn't the best game as a team and for myself," Taumalolo said of the decider.
"We've definitely looked at it and talked about a few things we could have done.
"As a team we've moved on from that and I'm sure the boys will be using it as motivation going into Thursday night's game."
The Cowboys flew to Melbourne yesterday and will finalise their preparations with a training run today.
Coach Paul Green said five-eighth Michael Morgan (abdominal strain) had shown promising signs in his attempt to play his first match of the season.
"He pulled up pretty well after training (Monday) so we're a lot more hopeful than we were last week," Green said.
"As I've said all along with this type of injury, it's one thing to train but it's also how it pulls up.
"He's been good so far this week but we've only trained once, so fingers crossed he's heading in the right direction.
"He's been pretty keen since the kick-off. It's pretty tough when you're injured and you're seeing what your teammates are going through and there's not much you can do about it to actually help.
"We're preparing more so that he will be playing rather than he won't be playing but we've still got another session to get through yet."
Green has promoted Origin forward Coen Hess to the starting side in place of Ethan Lowe, while Ben Hampton has retained the fullback duties.