Jason Taumalolo

Kiwis blindsided by Taumalolo omission

In a stunning decision Taumalolo, who was the joint-winner of the Dally M Award last year, this week pledged his allegiance to Tonga for the end-of-year campaign, with the Kiwis unaware of his intentions right up unti

Taumalolo, 56m to go for NRL record

Jason Taumalolo is pledging to fire up his "turbo diesel" engine for one last drive towards premiership glory after powering North Queensland's incredible journey to the NRL grand finale.

Taumalolo promised fans there was fuel left in the tank for Sunday night's blockbuster battle with Melbourne after destroying the Sydney Roosters pack at Sydney's Allianz Stadium in the semifinals.

Taumalolo best - Waerea-Hargreaves

While Waerea-Hargreaves was full of praise for his Kiwi counterpart, the Roosters are of the opinion they have the game plan to minimise his destructive impact in the do-or-die preliminary final at Allianz Stadium.

Taumalolo and Michael Morgan are the main reasons behind the Cowboys' unlikely finals resurgence – carrying the load in the absence of Johnathan Thurston and Matt Scott.

Gallen made to 'eat his words'

Gallen, who is set to fight Sonny Bill Williams in the boxing ring, accused the Cowboys of "crying poor" in the leadup to the match over their hefty injury toll - which included co-captains and Australian test stars Johnathan Thurston and Matt Scott.

But the Cowboys had the last laugh when halfback Michael Morgan slotted over a 15-metre field goal in extra time, to end the Sharks' premiership defence.

And Taumalolo, who looks up to Gallen and his longevity in the game, didn't hesitate to hit back with some tongue in cheek when reminded of the barbs after the match.

Taumalolo surprised by Cowboys' character

Despite brave efforts the Cowboys have lost their past three games and have dropped to eighth on the ladder, needing at least one win over the final three weeks of the regular season to qualify for the finals.

Starting with the Sharks at 1300SMILES Stadium on Saturday night, the Cowboys face the Wests Tigers (away) and the Broncos (home) to round out their season and Taumalolo told NRL.com that the courage they have displayed in recent weeks can carry them into September.

Taumalolo on Warriors denial

The Warriors have long been keen to lure Taumalolo back to his homeland.

In 2015, they offered him a $2 million contract only for the 24-year-old lock to re-sign with North Queensland for less money, that ultimately paid off for Taumalolo as the Cowboys won their maiden premiership that season.

Earlier this year, the Warriors again came calling with another hugely tempting offer which, combined with the chance to be around family, almost had Taumalolo packing his bags.

Taumalolo confirms decade long NRL deal

The reigning Dally M medallist's 10-year contract is believed to be worth $11 million, putting the 23-year-old lock forward among the game's highest-paid players.

Taumalolo, who has won an NRL premiership has played 115 games with the Cowboys since his debut in 2010.

He has turned his back on pursuing a career in the NFL after trialling in front of scouts in the United States in the off-season.

"The NFL opportunity was pretty big for me. Obviously to throw myself into another game, the negatives outweighed the positives," said Taumalolo.

Taumalolo, Scott to challenge bans

Both were charged over hits in the Cowboys' golden point win over Brisbane, with Taumalolo risking a two-match ban if found guilty at the judiciary.

Scott is facing a one-match ban but is also sidelined indefinitely after suffering an ACL injury during the match.

Meanwhile Warriors prop Charlie Gubb and Raiders forward Iosia Soliola have pleaded guilty to charges but will escape suspensions.

Taumalolo, Scott face suspensions

Taumalolo will miss one match with an early guilty plea but risks a two-match ban if he unsuccessfully fights the charge, which results from his 26th-minute hit on Brisbane's Alex Glenn on Friday night.

Matt Scott, who suffered a knee injury against the Broncos, is facing a one-match ban, while Gubb can avoid a suspension if he pleads guilty to a grade one dangerous contact charge.



Taumalolo called up by New Zealand

The North Queensland Cowboys lock shared the Dally M Medal with Cooper Cronk this week and joins Canberra Raiders pair Jordan Rapana and Joseph Tapine in getting the international nod.

New coach David Kidwell will cut his 32-man selection down to 24 next week as he prepares for his first game at the helm.