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Coote feeling the heat at Cowboys

Regret was the last thing Lachlan Coote thought he would feel when he arrived for pre-season training at his new NRL club North Queensland on Monday.
Coote feeling the heat at Cowboys
by AAP

By Laine Clark

BRISBANE, Nov 11 AAP - Regret was the last thing Lachlan Coote thought he would feel when he arrived for pre-season training at his new NRL club North Queensland on Monday.

Keen to leave no stone unturned in his bid to fill retired legend Matt Bowen's shoes, the ex-Penrith fullback had gone to the extreme of enduring heat chamber sessions for a week in Townsville just to acclimatise.

Still, Coote was left wondering what might have been after arriving at Cowboys training and being told that Scotland had made the World Cup quarter-finals.

So focussed was Coote on stepping up in Bowen's absence, the aspiring Cowboys No.1 withdrew from the Scottish squad ahead of the UK tournament.

Considered World Cup outsiders, Scotland locked up an unlikely quarter-final against holders New Zealand after Tonga ended Italy's fairytale run with a 16-0 defeat in Halifax.

"I have seen that, I am a bit jealous," Coote told reporters in Townsville.

"I wanted to play the World Cup for Scotland.

"But my focus is North Queensland.

"I wanted to be here and get ready for this pre-season, do everything to be right for round one."

Coote would have already impressed incoming head coach Paul Green after braving heat chamber sessions for a solid week.

"I wouldn't say it was enjoyable," Coote said.

"It is something I have not experienced before but I will be better for it.

"But I know January is the time to start panicking about that (heat)."

Coote also gets a chance to stand out in a skeleton Cowboys squad that will not have its full World Cup contingent of 12 players and assistant coach Terry Matterson back until January 13.

"Everyone wants to get their spot and make it their own," Coote said.

"I have come up here to fill Matty Bowen's spot. I am looking forward to that.

"I am doing everything I can to try and impress him (Green) and prepare myself."

Green admitted the Cowboys were behind the eight ball starting pre-season without their large World Cup contingent.

"If it was up to me I wouldn't have them away but that's what happens in a World Cup year. We have to make the best of the situation," said Green who takes over from Neil Henry.

"Teams who don't have anyone at the World Cup have obviously got an advantage because they can start working straight away on team structures and things like that but we will be fine.

"There's no secret to it (pre-season). It hasn't changed. It's just a lot of hard work."




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