It's a tough ask for the Cowboys to make the NRL finals, but Johnathan Thurston is convinced they can do it.
The playmaker will retire at the end of the season, and has no intention of seeing his final NRL campaign end without finals football.
We had to fight and scrap for everything on the weekend and no doubt we'll have to do that again.Johnathan Thurston
North Queensland are next to bottom on the NRL ladder, with just two wins from their opening seven games.
They will need to win at least 10 of their last 17 matches to reach the play-offs for a sixth consecutive season.
But Thurston's convinced the team will be playing finals football in September, and says the 26-14 win over the Titans last time out was a step in the right direction.
That victory ended a five-game losing skid, and the Australia international said: "We just need to build on that now. We had to fight and scrap for everything on the weekend and no doubt we'll have to do that again.
"We always have that belief, that's never changed from inside these four walls, and we need to make sure we continue the high standards that we set at training and transferring that on to the paddock."
Thurston, who turned 35 on Wednesday, admits it's harder to stay at the top of the game at his age.
He added: "The older you get the longer it takes to recover on the body but, being my final year it's easier to get out of bed and come to training and stir the boys up and go home to spend some time with the kids."
The Cowboys are 1.48 to win their next game against Canberra, who are 2.75.
North Queensland are 1.93 conceding a 7.5-points start.
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