North Queensland Cowboys playmaker Johnathan Thurston has not been named to take on Wests Tigers this Sunday for his side's Round 22 clash at Leichhardt Oval.

The representative halfback picked up a hamstring injury in the Cowboys' Round 20 win over the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs — ruling him out of his side's last-start defeat to the Melbourne Storm at 1300 SMILES Stadium on Saturday. And while there had been some talk of the 33-year-old returning this week, Cowboys Coach Paul Green has opted to name the same 17 players from last week as his side looks to maintain their top four spot.

Ray Thompson will partner Michael Morgan in the halves in Thurston's absence.

The only change for Wests Tigers to the side that defeated the Parramatta Eels comes through a knee injury to Luke Brooks, with Jack Littlejohn replacing him at halfback.

Littlejohn joined Wests Tigers in the off-season from Manly-Warringah and played in the Club’s Round 1 victory over the New Zealand Warriors in the absence of Brooks — who was suspended at the time. Michael Chee Kam joins an extended interchange bench from last week alongside Joel Edwards, Tim Grant, Ava Seumanufagai and Kyle Lovett.

See how both teams will line up for Sunday's big game at Leichhardt Oval below!

Sunday afternoon footy returns to Leichhardt Oval when we take on the Cowboys!

NORTH QUEENSLAND COWBOYS

1. Lachlan Coote
2. Javid Bowen
3. Justin O'Neill
4. Kane Linnett
5. Antonio Winterstein
6. Michael Morgan
7. Ray Thompson
8. Matthew Scott (capt.)
9. Jake Granville
10. James Tamou
11. Gavin Cooper
12. Ethan Lowe
13. Jason Taumalolo

Interchange:
14. Rory Kostjasyn
15. John Asiata
16. Scott Bolton
17. Ben Hannant

Coach: Paul Green

 

WESTS TIGERS

1. James Tedesco
2. David Nofoaluma
3. Tim Simona
4. Kevin Naiqama
5. Jordan Rankin
6. Mitchell Moses
7. Jack Littlejohn
8. Aaron Woods (capt.)
9. Dene Halatau
10. Sauaso Sue
11. Josh Aloiai
12. Chris Lawrence
13. Elijah Taylor

Interchange:
14. Kyle Lovett
15. Ava Seumanufagai
16. Tim Grant
17. Joel Edwards
18. Michael Chee Kam

Coach: Jason Taylor