Johnathan Thurston thinks Ben Barba can be as good as Matty Bowen at North Queensland Cowboys next year.
Barba will return to the NRL in 2019 after having a short spell in Super League with St Helens, where he picked up the Steve Prescott Man of Steel award.
Former Queensland, Cowboys and Wigan Warriors star Bowen became a household name in the NRL with his mesmerising play and Thurston believes Barba can be a similar figure next year.
Thurston said: “Benny Barba, we all know what he can do on the football field.
“We’ve seen that (Bowen-type magic) throughout his career and certainly having him at full-back, he has got a lot of speed and can change the game in the blink of an eye.
“That is what we have probably lacked throughout the year so hopefully he can score a few tries for us.
“I think he will fit into our structures really well and I don’t think the boys will be having a year like they did last season. I think the club is in really good shape for next year, obviously getting Morgo’ (Michael Morgan) back.”