Thurston, Scott return for Cowboys' trial

The long awaited return of co-captains Johnathan Thurston and Matt Scott for North Queensland's opening NRL trial has been offset by a hamstring injury to prized fullback Lachlan Coote.

Cowboys coach Paul Green confirmed Thurston and Scott would enjoy 30 minute cameos when they lead a 22-strong squad against Wests Tigers in Cairns on February 17.

In what looms as his final season, playmaker Thurston returns from a shoulder complaint suffered in State of Origin game two last June.

Test prop Scott underwent a knee reconstruction after going down in just the Cowboys' second game of 2017.

Green said the pair wanted to "blow the cobwebs off" ahead of their February 23 trial against Melbourne at Suncorp Stadium - Thurston and Cameron Smith's testimonial match.

"It's good to have them back," Green said.

"They haven't played much footy in a while.

"Just having them around at training has been really good.

"They wanted a hit out before Melbourne, blow a few cobwebs out for probably 30 minutes, something like that."

The good news for their leaders was tempered by confirmation Cowboys No.1 Coote is nursing a hamstring complaint.

Ben Hampton has been named at fullback for the Cairns trial.

"I don't think (Coote) will be right ... but it's nothing too serious," Green said.

"Ben played a fair bit of fullback as a kid, so it's a role he's not unaccustomed to."

New Zealand playmaker Te Maire Martin will be the Cowboys' only Rugby League World Cup player to feature.

Michael Morgan, Jason Taumalolo and new signing Jordan McLean will play in the Storm game in Brisbane.

"Most guys are itching to play but the squad is 36 and we only have two trials - we want to give everyone some footy before the season starts," Green said.

Cowboys squad for Wests Tigers trial: Ben Hampton, Gideon Gela-Mosby, Javid Bowen, Shaun Hudson, Enari Tuala, Te Maire Martin, Johnathan Thurston, Scott Bolton, Jake Granville, Matt Scott, Ethan Lowe, Coen Hess, John Asiata, Kyle Laybutt, Jake Clifford, Mitch Dunn, Shane Wright, Corey Jensen, Sam Hoare, Emry Pere, Francis Molo, Carlin Anderson.