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Coach of NRL's Cowboys feeling pressure

Another loss may yet seal North Queensland coach Neil Henry's fate - and the Cowboys mentor admits he is feeling the pressure.
Coach of NRL's Cowboys feeling pressure
by AAP

By Laine Clark

BRISBANE, June 4 AAP - Another loss may yet seal North Queensland coach Neil Henry's fate - and the Cowboys mentor admits he is feeling the pressure.

Speculation is rife that former NSW pivot Trent Barrett is in line to replace Henry as soon as next week if the Cowboys succumb to a fifth straight NRL loss, against Canterbury in Townsville on Saturday night.

Henry said the Cowboys' season will go on the line this weekend.

However, the stakes appear much higher for Henry.

"I think you would have to feel some sort of pressure," Henry said of his situation on Tuesday.

"That's the nature of the beast.

"We are not where we want to be, we need to be consistent."

The heat is on Henry after pre-season title possibles North Queensland slumped to a 4-8 record, leaving them four points outside the top eight near the mid-point of the season.

"This next two-week period is crucial to how we go this season," Henry said.

"There is no doubt we need to get on a roll. We need to start it this weekend.

"We need to do a bit of soul searching and start resurrecting a season."

Henry named his State of Origin stars Johnathan Thurston, Matt Scott, James Tamou and Brent Tate for the Bulldogs clash but said he would not push them to play if they were nursing niggles from the mid-week series opener - no matter how tempting it was.

"They all pride themselves on backing up (from Origin) but the reality is sometimes they are not right to go," he said.

"Given the importance this game takes on for our season I am sure they will be keen to play if they are right."

A 21-strong extended squad has been named as a precaution.




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