Tamou convinces Scott to stay with Cowboys

LAINE CLARK
Last updated 17:04 15/02/2013

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Johnathan Thurston's future may be a "slight" concern for Matt Scott but the Test prop was motivated by another JT when he agreed to stay with the North Queensland Cowboys for another four years.

Scott, 27, knocked back lucrative offers from the likes of Parramatta and South Sydney to sign on again until the end of the 2017 NRL season, keeping his dream of being a one-club player alive.

However, Scott admitted he'd been tempted to head to Sydney especially with North Queensland's off-contract Test pivot Thurston yet to re-commit to the club.

Ten clubs are believed to be in pursuit of Thurston, including Penrith who reportedly tabled a four-year, $5.2 million deal.

But Scott revealed it was the re-signing of a teammate with Thurston's initials that helped convince him to stay - fellow Test prop James Tamou.

"The thought of playing in the front row with him was very attractive. He's not the sort of bloke you would want to play against," said Scott in Cairns on Friday.

"Johnathan still off contract was a slight concern for me but I've got faith in the club."

So much so that Scott had no concerns when the Cowboys were named in the Australian Crime Commission's drugs probe.

Subsequent talks with Australian Sport Anti-Doping Authority officials suggested they had little cause for concern.

"I have 100 per cent confidence in the club. It hasn't been a concern for me whatsoever," Scott said.

Still, Scott was tempted to walk away from the club that had snapped him up in 2004 "straight out of school".

"You have to leave your options open, there was definite possibilities," said Scott who has played 141 games for the Cowboys plus 10 Tests and 11 Origins for Queensland.

"But I said to my manager from the start that I wanted to give the Cowboys every opportunity.

"I always wanted to be a one-club man.

"That was attractive but there were other offers that had attractive benefits as well, not all financial."

Scott does not believe this is his final contract despite the deal expiring when he is 32.

"I would like to think I could play beyond that," he said.

"As I go on it gets harder to play for my body but I think we have the right things in place to enable me to play for a long time at the Cowboys."

Meanwhile, Thurston - whose manager Sam Ayoub formally began contract talks with the Cowboys this week - has been named to play the trial against the Dragons in Cairns tomorrow night.

But he may be rested as he nurses a wrist complaint suffered in last weekend's All Stars game.

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