NORTH Queensland coach Paul Green says the return of some key players from injury for its clash against a last-placed Cronulla likely to be missing skipper Paul Gallen is the launch pad for the Cowboys to make a run at the finals.
Test prop James Tamou and hooker Rory Kostjasyn are both set to return, along with scrum utility Ray Thompson on the bench for the clash at Remondis Stadium.
Green will be hoping the travel-shy Cowboys, who sit one game outside the top eight, can register their first away win in nine attempts this season.
He said his players had been able to shake-off some niggling injuries and were mentally refreshed coming off an Origin bye.
"It's helped freshen us physically and mentally and now we've got a good opportunity ahead of us," he said.
"Hopefully we can finish with a bang."
With Matt Scott still a few weeks away from returning a from a serious eye socket injury which required surgery, Green will be happy to have his other representative prop Tamou back on deck along with the creative Kostjasyn and Thompson.
"It's great to have those guys back to give us a bit of a boost," said Green. "Ray and Rory could have both played last week had we have had a game so they are fine."
Green wasn't totally convinced Gallen (bicep) would not play but conceded Cronulla would miss his high work-rate and inspirational leadership if he didn't.
"To be honest, I am not too worried about Cronulla. I've got enough on my plate worrying about the Cowboys. That's all I am focusing on," he said.