The Cowboys are hoping a week bunkered down in Sydney can set them on course for their maiden NRL crown.

Once a horror destination where they couldn’t win a game, North Queensland are hoping a week of intense bonding in Sydney can set them on course for their maiden NRL crown.

Cornered by the short turnaround between Monday’s night’s one-point loss to Penrith and Saturday’s crucial round 24 NRL clash with premiership favourites South Sydney, Cowboys coach Paul Green opted to bunker down for the week in Cronulla, in the city’s south.

Faced with a lead-in to the finals of homes games against last-placed Cronulla and top-of-the-table Manly, in-form back-rower Gavin Cooper said the week together in the Harbour City would give the seventh-placed Cowboys invaluable bonding time together.

“I think everyone knows how important it is and the sacrifices that everyone has to make leading into the back end of the year,” Cooper told AAP.

“We are not guaranteed of anything, the competition is too tight for that, any team in the eight has a genuine crack of winning it.

“The last three weeks are very important for us.

“The time in Sydney is a chance to bond, it will be good for us.

“It is a chance to be honest with each other, to talk about where we are going right where we are going wrong.

“We will be together the whole week, that is something we don’t get to do at home.”

The Cowboys suffered nine successive losses in Sydney earlier this year before securing breakthrough wins over Cronulla and Canterbury.

A win over the Rabbitohs would give the Cowboys great momentum heading into September.

“We have had a lot of games this year where we haven’t turned those close losses into close wins,” Cooper said.

“We have a few tough games to finish off the season, we will see where we are at

“Souths have been flying, their game hasn’t changed too much throughout the year, they have the big power game right through the middle.

“If you can take it to them in the middle it limits their options out wide because they have got guys that can turn boys inside out with some crazy speed.”