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Leeds Rhinos vs North Queensland Cowboys World Club Challenge betting tips - Thurston to lead Cowboys to maiden WCC title win

  • Leeds Rhinos host North Queensland Cowboys at 1900 GMT on Sunday
  • Rhinos won the treble last season
  • Cowboys won NRL Grand Final for the first time in 2015

Leeds Rhinos will be looking to claim a record breaking fourth World Club Challenge title when they take on North Queensland Cowboys at Headingley on Sunday.

World Club Series Match Odds: (Paddy Power) Leeds 9/4, Draw 20/1, Cowboys 1/3 

The 2016 World Club Series sees three teams from Super League do battle with three from the NRL, the opening games sees St Helens take on Sydney Roosters while the Super League and NRL Grand Final runners-up, Wigan Warriors and Brisbane Broncos, lock horns on Saturday.

The series comes to a close on Sunday evening with Super League champions Leeds Rhinos playing host to NRL Grand Final winners North Queensland Cowboys in the World Club Challenge.

Joel Moon of the Leeds Rhinos is tackled by Ben Flower (10) of the Wigan Warriors. (Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
The Rhinos were the last British team to win the World Club Challenge when they defeated Manly Sea Eagles 26-12 at Headingley back in 2012, they were, however, unable to become the first team ever to win back-to-back championships as they went down 18-14 to the Melbourne Storm a year later.

Leeds won everything on offer in 2015 as they picked up the League Leaders Shield, Challenge Cup and the Super League title, but there has been a number of changes ahead of the 2016 campaign with Jamie Peacock, Kevin Sinfield and Kylie Leuluai all retiring, while Paul Aiton has left and new captain Danny McGuire is out for a couple of months with a knee injury.

They have recruited with the likes of Keith Galloway, Beau Falloon, Anthony Mullally and Brett Ferres but the gap left by their departing stars is huge and it could take them a while to recover.

The North Queensland Cowboys, who won their first ever NRL Grand Final in 2015 thanks to a 17-16 extra-time success over fierce rivals Brisbane Broncos, are taking their first ever meeting in the World Club Challenge very seriously.

Cowboys captains Johnathan Thurston and Matthew Scott hold the Premiership trophy. (Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)
Star man and Golden Boot winner Johnathan Thurston opted to sit out of the Auckland Nines and 2016 All Stars match between the Indigenous All Stars and World All Stars to make sure he was 100% fit for the trip to England.

The Cowboys are an extremely talented bunch of players with the likes of Gavin Cooper, Ben Hannant, Rory Kostjasyn, Michael Morgan and Kane Linnett in the best form of their careers.

If Thurston is on top of his game then there is no way Leeds will win this one, but if he starts to struggle and the vocal support from the South Stand lifts the Rhinos then anything can happen. We are backing the Cowboys to be too strong and quick for the Rhinos and expect them to win by 13 or more points at 13/10 with Paddy Power.

Leeds Rhinos versus North Queensland Cowboys takes place at Headingley on Sunday, February 21 with a kick-off time of 1900 GMT. This game will be screened live on Sky Sports.

Recommended Bet:
North Queensland Cowboys to win by 13+ points - 13/10 Paddy Power


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Leeds Rhinos vs North Queensland Cowboys World Club Challenge betting tips - Thurston to lead Cowboys to maiden WCC title win

Leeds Rhinos will be looking to claim a record breaking fourth World Club Challenge title when they take on North Queensland Cowboys at Headingley on Sunday.

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