Test prop Matt Scott has called for Michael Morgan’s Kangaroos selection after the pivot was hailed as the man who helped North Queensland avoid an NRL premiership hangover.
Morgan had four try assists and crossed himself in the 71st minute, finishing a wonderful set-piece to ice a 44-18 rout of South Sydney in Townsville on Friday night.
Kangaroos coach Mal Meninga is considering Morgan as a bench utility among a swag of changes for the one-off Test against New Zealand at Newcastle on May 6.
Morgan’s Cowboys and Queensland teammate Scott believed the playmaker had already shown he could step up to representative level as a Maroons bench utility.
“We saw what he can do in the Origin arena off the bench last year,” Scott said.
“I think he is the perfect utility.
“He’s capable of playing so many positions.”
A Kangaroos call-up would cap a remarkable 12 months for Morgan.
He played all three State of Origin games off the bench under Meninga last year despite the availability of Daly Cherry-Evans, helping Queensland win their ninth series in 10 years.
And he also set up the last-gasp try that sent the 2015 NRL grand final into golden point, ultimately sealed by North Queensland.
“He has improvement with his ball playing, his confidence has grown,” Scott said of Morgan.
“He’s calling the ball away from JT (Johnathan Thurston) a lot more, so that’s good to see.
“I would love to see him in the (Test) team.”
Cowboys coach Paul Green said Morgan had helped North Queensland improve in 2016, avoiding the dreaded premiership hangover.
He said Morgan had helped the Cowboys improve organisation on their right edge which incredibly has not conceded a try in seven weeks.
“I was asked a lot before this season where do we improve,” Green said.
“And I think last year they (right edge) were getting used to each other particularly in defence.
“But so far this year that has been our strongest side.
“That’s where our improvement will come.”
Green also paid tribute to Scott who set the tone against the giant Rabbitohs pack by pulling off some fearsome early hits.
However, Scott was placed on report for a 66th minute tackle that forced a dazed Greg Inglis off the field.
“I said to him after the game, he’s our leader of the pack and that is what we want to see from him,” Green said.
“That (early hits) really set the tone.”