Cowboys without Winterstein against Sharks

Updated: 

North Queensland Cowboys will be without winger Antonio Winterstein in Friday's NRL preliminary final against Cronulla Sharks at Allianz Stadium.

Winterstein, the defending premiers' leading try-scorer this season with 13, missed the dramatic semi-final win over fierce rivals Brisbane Broncos last week and is still suffering from a rib injury.

"He won't be training with us, no," Cowboys assistant coach Todd Payten said when asked about Winterstein's fitness.

Javid Bowen will line up against the Sharks in the continued absence of the clinical Winterstein.

The Cowboys also have a concern over Kane Linnett, who also missed out against the Broncos, as the veteran centre has a hamstring problem.