Scott inclusion a must for Cowboys: Ikin

Sep 19, 2017 - 5:32 PM Maroons great Ben Ikin wants North Queensland coach Paul Green to pull the trigger and unleash Cowboys enforcer Matt Scott on the Sydney Roosters in their NRL grand final qualifier in Sydney.

In one of the selection surprises of the season, Green has named Scott in an extended 21-man squad for Saturday's do-or-die clash at Allianz Stadium following the Test prop's apparent recovery from a knee reconstruction.

Scott broke down in round two in March and Green says he is unlikely to make a return, claiming he only named the 32-year-old out of respect as the club's co-captain with fellow injured star Johnathan Thurston.

"It's not out of the realms of possibility he plays, but I'm not intending to play him this week," Green said.

"It'd come down to medical advice. At this stage, yeah they've said there's a risk, but it'd be a calculated risk. He certainly wouldn't be playing 80 minutes."

Ikin, though, believes any minutes would be a bonus, saying that Thurston and Scott were such inspirations at the Cowboys that they demanded instant recalls if cleared by the medical staff.

"I mean, these two guys mean so much not just for the football club but to the entire region. It would be easy for the rest of the team if Paul Green decided to play Matt Scott, just to slot him in," Ikin told Fox Sports News.

"The player, whoever ends up missing out, would be respectful and understanding of that decision as a coach because Matt Scott is one of the modern greats when it comes to playing in the front row.

"He's done great things and won a premiership with North Queensland. He's been a star for Queensland and Australia for a long time.

"If he's right to go, no one would be complaining up there in north Queensland about him taking the field."

The Roosters are treating the threat of Scott playing seriously.

Roosters captain Boyd Cordner noted Scott had passed the six-month mark since his reconstruction, the standard recovery time for such an injury.

"They've obviously got a lot of trust in him and why wouldn't you? He's one of the best front-rowers in the game," Cordner said.

"If they do go with him, that's obviously an obstacle for us, a bit of a hurdle. He's a great player, another challenge for us.

"Any team with Matt Scott, if you can get your Test front-rower back, it's a huge bonus for them.

"But we'll focus on ourselves and we're looking forward to the contest no matter who plays."

Source: AAP

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