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NRL: Cowboys ready for hostile derby clash

North Queensland coach Todd Payten says he and his players are expecting a hostile atmosphere when they step into Suncorp Stadium for the derby clash with the Brisbane Broncos on Sunday.

The Cowboys are priced at 8/5 to win the clash and with both sides in good form the game is being billed as the closest match-up between them in years.

Both teams in top form

North Queensland have won one game out of two but will take plenty of heart from the way they thrashed the Canberra Raiders last week.

The Broncos have got off to a lightening start with two wins from two and the home fans will be expecting three on the bounce.

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Payten says his players are keeping a lid on their emotions for now but says they are well aware of what will greet them at Suncorp.

"They've been pretty calm through the week, but this is also a couple of our guys' first experience of a Queensland derby and we expect to walk into a pretty hostile environment down there in front of their home crowd," he said.

"They're 2-0 and pretty confident, so we know what we're walking into."

Call for focus

Meanwhile Payten says it is important they remain focused on themselves and do not think about the Broncos, who will be lead by Adam Reynolds, too much.

"I'm looking for the same effort, and that's around our line speed, kick pressure, our kick chase they're the non-negotiables if we want to win games from week to week, we have to build our game on that.

"We need to ice our opportunities and get our execution right, so we need to focus on getting our job done first and foremost."

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