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  1. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Surfers6 View Post
    Lawton offers much more from the bench than zillman.
    And you can just move bird to 13 when lawton is ready to be injected and keep presto roaming from the 1 for the full 80

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    Rogers raring to go

    Returning from a two-month injury lay-off, Titans veteran Mat Rogers is hoping to repay the faith coach John Cartwright has shown in him by putting in a big performance against Manly on Friday night.

    Rogers hasn't featured for Gold Coast since injuring his medial ligament against the Dragons in Round 6, but a quicker than expected rehabilitation has the dual-international itching to get back to the action.

    Thursday morning's training session at Skilled Park was the last hurdle standing in Rogers' way and after coming through unscathed, any qualms he had about his knee have since disappeared.

    "It was a good hit-out this morning with a good ball-work session so it's just exciting to be out there with the team and not running around on my own," an eager Rogers said.

    "I've done some pretty solid work on the knee over the last couple of weeks and a few days ago I had some reservations ... but I was reassured by the medical staff and (Titans conditioner) Ronnie Palmer who put me through all the work, and we've come up good."

    Rogers said that sitting on the sidelines was frustrating especially when the side wasn't getting results, and hopes his presence on Friday night will help the Titans turn around their three-match losing streak.

    "I'm not relaxed (when watching from the sidelines) put it that way. When we're winning and when we're winning well it's alright like the Penrith game but that's about it," he said.

    "The boys are trying hard that's the worst thing, and they're feeling a lot of pain and you're not there with them to feel it and being part of the team that's a struggle."

    "I'd like to think Carty has shown enough faith in me to put me back in the side and I want to repay that with a good performance and stay there for the rest of the year."

    "I'm not in the team because I can't play so I'd like to think I can have some form of impact."

    "Whether it's tightening up an edge in defence or whether it's scoring tries if the ball comes my way and I get some opportunity I'll relish that."

    While speculation still surrounds the 34 year-old's future at the club, Rogers insisted that remaining a Titan was his No.1 priority heading forward, but he did recognise the importance of giving the club's up-and-comers a taste or NRL.

    "I'd love to stay here, I've been here for the last three years this is my fourth now and I can feel something special brewing about the place and it would be nice to hang around," he said.

    "The unfortunate thing about Rugby League is the salary cap and we have some fantastic young players who need to be paid, otherwise we'll lose them to another club or another code."

    And there is no clearer indication of the Titans' desire to foster young talent with Gold Coast youth product Ryan James set to make his first-grade debut against the Sea Eagles on Friday night.

    The 18 year-old forward has impressed Titans coaching staff in the Toyota Cup this season and Cartwright said he's looking forward to seeing how he performs under the bright lights.

    "He's shown potential and he's only very young, but he's shown a will and-a-want to be there and I think we probably need a bit of youthful enthusiasm and

    I think he'll give it to us," Cartwright said of James.

    "He's a very aggressive young fella and he's enthusiastic. The challenge especially for him in the forwards, is to take what he's done in the lower age or division and bring it to first-grade."

    Adding to the theme of new faces, Gold Coast stalwart Luke O'Dwyer will also make his long-awaited return from a major knee re-construction, along with big enforcer Bodene Thompson.

    Source: http://sportal.com.au/
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  3. #48
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    Titans v Sea Eagles
    Skilled Park Friday 7.35pm


    The second half of the NRL regular season kicks off with a very intriguing and important clash between two top-eight sides.

    The Titans have now slumped to three consecutive losses, a run that has seen them go from second place on the NRL ladder to sixth, while the Sea Eagles are also entering the encounter off the back of a loss, although they remain in fourth spot.

    Both sides are 7-5 but Manly has a superior differential, giving them the edge at the halfway point.

    It is only this differential that would likely keep the Sea Eagles in the top eight if they were to lose this clash, but one thing is certain: they won?t be top-four if they go down.

    The Titans don?t have the same luxury, considering their differential is in the negative; it is a distinct possibility they could end the weekend outside of the finals zone if they don?t find a way to return to the winner?s circle.

    Origin and injuries are affecting both sides, with the changes from last week reading this way: Titans centres Clinton Toopi and Joseph Tomane are out, with Mat Rogers and Sam Tagataese coming in. Ashley Harrison is away on Queensland duty, which sees Bodene Thompson in to start at lock. Will Matthews is off the bench leaving Ryan James, Luke O?Dwyer and William Zillman as the new faces.

    For Manly, Anthony Watmough is out (for a month) with Chris Bailey coming into the second row and although Jason King wasn?t named, his omission from the final Blues? 17 should see him suit up at prop, with Brent Kite heading back to the bench.

    The side has extras named in the reserves list, with Des Hasler to choose one of Joe Galuvao, Vic Mauro or Jamie Buhrer to join the team.

    Watch out Titans: The Sea Eagles are no Penrith when it comes to scoring tries from kicks, but they are the next best side with 14 tries in 12 games coming from the boot. Considering the Titans have conceded 11 from the kick, this could be a significant factor in this game.

    Kieran Foran has five try assists from kicks this season while Trent Hodkinson has four, so both halves need to be pressured when it comes to attacking kicks or the results could be bad for the home side.

    The Titans? biggest weakness is cross-field kicks, where they are only successfully defusing 44 per cent of the attempts punted their way.

    Watch out Sea Eagles: The Titans might be in a mini-slump but two specific stats where they are leading the NRL should pose a huge red flag to the Sea Eagles? coaching staff. If the Gold Coast boys hit their straps and continue to lead the way in both play-the-ball speed and also starting position for sets of six, they could turn out to be one of the competition?s elite sides once more.

    With a ?fast? play-the-ball rating on 18.5 per cent of occasions, the Titans are top dogs in the NRL ? and when you are fast in the ruck, you can generally catch teams off guard to either draw penalties or make breaks.

    The Titans have also started their sets of six inside their opponents half more often than any other side this year (145 times) and with this kind of field position, points are much easier to find.

    Where it will be won: Defence is the key in this one.

    The Titans have slipped dreadfully in the past six weeks, conceding more than 20 points every game to take their season average up to 22.9 points conceded each week.

    The Sea Eagles have been much more solid at an average of 17.4 conceded, but with several stars out they will be tested more than they have been so far this season.

    Both packs need to get physical with the other and win the ruck. The news about the Titans? play-the-ball speed gives them an edge here ? but only if they can continue playing like the second half against Canberra last weekend, not the first half.

    If the Sea Eagles fire up and work hard they could slow down the Titans? forwards, but they need to be wary of penalties. Both teams have given up way too many penalties this season and are amongst the NRL?s most ill-disciplined sides.

    The history: Played 6; Titans 2, Sea Eagles 4. The Gold Coast snuck home in Round 7 earlier this season at Brookvale Oval to post just their second win over Manly, making it two of the past three. The sides have split the two previous games held at Skilled Park, although the Sea Eagles controversially lost by just one point in 2009 thanks to a late penalty goal.

    Another close Manly win would give them five consecutive away wins by single figures for the first time since 1987.

    Conclusion: This is a tough match to tip. The Titans were much better in the second half against Canberra but essentially they are in a slump and the Sea Eagles are missing some key individuals through injury.

    Scott Prince really should be able to guide his team to victory here ? but it?s probably not wise to pull out your life savings to invest on this, as the loss of a few players of their own make them vulnerable.

    The Sea Eagles are a side that can get gritty and find a win? plus the likes of King and dumped Origin prop Josh Perry will be out to impress. Go with your gut and enjoy the rollercoaster ride.

    Match officials: Referees ? Gavin Badger & Ben Cummins; Sideline Officials ? Jeff Younis & Chris James; Video Ref ? Sean Hampstead.

    Televised: Live ? Channel Nine ? 7.30pm

    Source: http://www.nrl.com
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  4. #49
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    Looking forward to this game! I am confident that this is the turning point of our downhill slide of recent and we are going to kick some sea eagle butt! Unfortunately I am bringing along a manly fan - who I'm sure will be wishing he wasn't there by the end Nothing better than a nice quiet manly supporter!! - ok except maybe a quiet broncos one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mushi View Post
    Unfortunately I am bringing along a manly fan - who I'm sure will be wishing he wasn't there by the end Nothing better than a nice quiet manly supporter!! - ok except maybe a quiet broncos one.
    It's up to the Titans to keep the Manly fans quiet. They need to come out switched on.

    We don't want the MANY Manly fans in the stands making noise.

    We desperately want to send them home disappointed.
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  6. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by DIEHARD View Post
    It's up to the Titans to keep the Manly fans quiet. They need to come out switched on.

    We don't want the MANY Manly fans in the stands making noise.

    We desperately want to send them home disappointed.
    titans are very heavy favourites on sportsbet.com.au in this one. $1.44 titans $2.88 sea eagles

  7. #52
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    Rookie Titans Ryan James, Bodene Thompson step up for Manly clash

    THE Gold Coast Titans will turn to an experienced hand and two rookie firebrands to blast them out of a month-long losing streak against Manly at Skilled Park on Friday night.

    Mat Rogers will play his first match in two months, but it is the inclusion of raw forward Bodene Thompson and 18-year-old debutant Ryan James that has given the club a spring in the step as they seek to stop a mid-season slump.

    James, a 106kg, 192cm excitement machine, is the club's youngest first gamer since halfback Jordan Rankin played against Newcastle as a 16-year-old two years ago.

    Eager not to let the hype affect their young star, the Titans placed the former Australian Schoolboys representative under a media ban this week.

    But there were plenty of others willing to talk up the under-20s captain, who grew up playing in the Gold Coast hinterland for Bilambil Jets and adds an X-factor to the Titans' forward pack.

    Coach John Cartwright said he was an exciting prospect.

    "He is only very young but he is a very aggressive young fella," he said.

    "We probably need a little bit of youthful enthusiasm."

    Former Origin centre Chris Close, who works for the Titans in a player development role, is another fan of James and expects Friday night to be the beginning of a long first grade career.

    "He's a footballer," Close said.

    "He's a big, young, strong kid. He's got a great attitude, tremendous leadership skills, and he's a giant of a kid.

    "He's fought his way back from a serious knee injury, and he's only three games back and here he is on the bench in first grade, so he's certainly caught the attention of Johnny Cartwright that's for sure."

    Aggression is also a hallmark of Thompson, whose season has so far been punctuated with suspensions at both NRL and Queensland Cup level.

    Rogers, off contract at the year's end, is out to prove he still has plenty to offer as he returns from a knee injury.

    He said he hoped to remain on the tourist strip next year, despite talk linking him with everyone from Cronulla to the Queensland Reds.

    With consecutive losses to the Broncos, Roosters and Canberra, the Titans have slipped to sixth and Cartwright conceded the players had their backs to the wall against a Manly side sitting fourth on the competition ladder.

    "You can use whatever phrase you like," he said.

    "The fact is we're not winning and we need to turn it around."

    But with Manly coming off a disappointing last-start loss to Brisbane and turning up at Skilled minus linchpins Jamie Lyon and Anthony Watmough, there is a feeling the Sea Eagles are ripe for the picking.

    Titans utility Luke O'Dwyer will also play his first match of the season, and his first as a father after the birth of his son Jax on Thursday.

    The healthy baby will take the middle name of Ryan as a tribute to O'Dwyer's brother, who died from leukaemia in 1998.

    Preston Campbell sat out most of Thursday's session with a bruised heel but is considered a certain starter.

    Source: http://www.couriermail.com.au
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  8. #53
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    Reservations then reassurance: Rogers ready to return for Titans

    GOLD COAST centre Mat Rogers received a final clearance to make his comeback from a two-month injury lay-off in tonight's match against Manly after completing yesterday's training session without incident.

    Rogers hasn't featured for the Titans since injuring his medial ligament against St George Illawarra in round six, but a quicker than expected rehabilitation has the dual-international raring to help the team back into the winner's circle after successive losses to Sydney Roosters and Canberra.

    ''I've done some pretty solid work on the knee over the last couple of weeks and a few days ago I had some reservations … but I was reassured by the medical staff and [Titans conditioner] Ronnie Palmer, who put me through all the work, and we've come up good,'' Rogers said.

    Teenage forward Ryan James will make his NRL debut for the Titans from the interchange bench after impressing the coaching staff in the under-20s. Manly travelled to Gold Coast yesterday boosted by the inclusion of captain Jason King after the NSW Origin squad was trimmed from 21 players to 17. However, the Sea Eagles will be without injured stars Jamie Lyon and Anthony Watmough, who is out for up to six weeks with a groin injury.

    http://www.smh.com.au/rugby-league/l...0610-y0l7.html
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    Rogers keen to make impact against Manly

    Gold Coast centre Mat Rogers has put Manly on notice as he plans to make an instant impact in his NRL return from injury at Skilled Park a month ahead of schedule.

    The dual international put in a solid training session on Thursday, his first with the Titans since he ruptured his medial ligament eight weeks ago, and showed no signs of distress after the workout.

    "No trouble at all, not even a thought about the knee at the minute, I'm just excited to get back on the field," said Rogers.

    "It was a good hit out with the ball work session and exciting to be out there with the team and not running around on my own.

    "Just a few days ago I had reservations (about the knee) but I was definitely reassured by the medical staff and I've come up good."

    Rogers, who laughed off rumours linking him to Super 14 franchise Queensland, admitted it had been tough watching from the sidelines as the Titans lost their last three games.

    But he hopes to help turn that worrying losing streak around against the Sea Eagles.

    "I'd like to think I'm going to play well," he said.

    "Whether it's just tightening up an edge in defence or whether it's scoring tries ... if the ball comes my way and I get the opportunity I'll relish that."

    Rogers said he wanted to stay with the club beyond this season, though he acknowledged salary cap restraints may make it difficult for the Titans to do so.

    But he laughed off reports linking his name to the Reds.

    "It's been interesting, someone sent me a message on Twitter about that, so that's all I know about that at this stage," he said.

    "And someone sent me another message this morning saying there were a few unkind words said about that, so I'm not overly concerned about anything other than playing well and playing well for the Titans.

    "I'd love to stay here ... this is my fourth year here and I can feel something pretty special brewing around the place and it'd be nice to hang around but the unfortunate thing about rugby league is salary cap issues.

    "We've got some fantastic young players who need to be paid, otherwise we'll lose them to another club or another code."

    Source: http://www.smh.com.au
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    Eagles soar, then go splat



    THESE are the damning statistics that show how Manly go from being the competition's best to the worst in just 80 minutes.

    The Daily Telegraph can today reveal that Manly are the best team in the NRL over the opening 20 minutes of each game in 2010.

    The Sea Eagles have led nine of their 12 games after 20 minutes - scoring 96 points and conceding just 32.

    On a hypothetical competition table, Manly would be placed first.

    However that intensity seems to dry up for the Sea Eagles, who collapse badly over the last 20 minutes of every game - as the stats reveal.

    Between the 61st and 80th minutes, Manly are ranked 16th and last.

    Over those final 20 minutes, the Sea Eagles have conceded 107 points and scored only 22 - fewer than two points each game.

    It is a remarkable mid-match turnaround for a team that won the 2008 premiership and were runners-up in 2007.

    However Manly chief executive Graham Lowe was anything but worried about his side's second-half woes, saying yesterday: "It is just statistical gobbledygook.

    "You don't win Melbourne Cups in June and neither an NRL premiership. We aren't concerned by those stats.

    "Des Hasler [coach] is one of the game's most respected coaches. He, more than most, knows how to get the best out of his side.

    "He has proven that over a long period of time."

    Souths are the second-best side in the opening 20 minutes and Canberra are the second-worst in the final 20 minutes, ahead of only the Sea Eagles.

    The Rabbitohs are also ranked first over the final 20 minutes with a points differential of 52 points.

    Gold Coast and St George Illawarra are next.

    North Queensland and the Sydney Roosters are the worst two sides statistically over the opening 20 minutes of games.

    Meanwhile Manly prop Josh Perry is expected to sign with English Super League club St Helens this weekend.

    The Daily Telegraph revealed Perry would leave Manly five weeks ago.

    Perry will now see out his career in Lancashire.

    "The deal is very close," Perry's manager Mike Newton said.

    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/
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    Friend a real foe for Ballin

    THERE are no friends on the field and Sea Eagles hooker Matt Ballin knows that will definitely be the case when he locks horns with his Gold Coast opposite Nathan Friend.

    Ballin beat Friend to achieve his dream of filling in for Queensland hooker Cameron Smith in the first State of Origin game when the Storm star was injured.

    He knows Friend will be keen to prove tonight when the teams meet at Skilled Park that he could have done the job for the Maroons.

    "That's a given," said Ballin, when asked if he expected Friend to lift for what's basically a battle to be the hooking understudy for Queensland.

    "He was probably pretty disappointed at not getting picked.

    "I think it was pretty close between him and Aaron Payne and myself.

    "So when you're playing one another it always brings out the best in you and he's always a very solid player for them."

    But having tasted Origin Ballin's not about to let anyone get the jump on him as first choice if the Maroons need a back-up.

    "That one game of Origin was such a great experience and I loved it," said Ballin, not that that's enough even though as a proud Queenslander he'll still be a happy man even if he never gets back there again.

    "I've played for Queensland and won a game, but I definitely want to get back there and I'll be working hard to do it."

    The Sea Eagles will have the job ahead of them tonight with the Gold Coast coming off a loss away to Canberra.

    Manly have their own woes after being beaten at home by the Broncos on Sunday as well.

    "They (Titans) were probably down a bit last week which isn't good for us," said Ballin.

    "They're at home where they have a great record and they have Scott Prince leading them around the park."

    Making matters worse for the Eagles is that they are without some of their big guns.

    Centre and co-captain Jamie Lyon would normally be in State of Origin with the Blues as would explosive backrower Anthony Watmough.

    Unfortunately they're both injured while Kiwi Test centre Steve Matai is suspended.

    It means regular starts in the top grade for rookies Dean Whare and Will Hopoate.

    "It's unfortunate they're out and disappointing but we just have to adapt," said Ballin.

    "Dean Whare defended well against Israel Folau last week.

    "These guys are young but they are very exciting and they bring a lot of enthusiasm to the side."

    And Team Ballin will be bringing their own level of enthusiasm to Skilled Park tonight to ensure the Eagles don't land without support.

    "All the family's coming down from Kingaroy and the wife's family from Brisbane," he said.

    "Mum and dad and the in-laws and the uncles and aunties so we should have a fair crew so it'll be good."

    Source: http://www.goldcoast.com.au
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  12. #57
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    Just cracked my first beer in readiness for the walk in and might make it my last - it is frickin' freezing!! If you are reading this before you head in, take a couple of jumpers!!

  13. #58
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    good to have rogers back, just brings alot in defense, knows how to tackle williams, n he put pressure on him that lead to the 1st try
    also, gordon found his feet again

    laffanci is sooooo hot n cold, reason y they scored their try, but shouldnt of been due to drop ball they miss'd, hows footy but.

    tell u wat, taga and thompson have impressed me alot


    also someone tell carty, get someone to boot it off the scrum for gordon/mead to chase, try every time!!!!!!!

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    best game of the season for the titans IMO, manly must hate gordan by now 6 tries in 4 games against the sea eagles, i was saying last week that the good teams still win even with horrible referee decisions and well this game was a fine example, i think ben cummins is an awful ref but gavin badger is easily the best,if i had to nitpick the titans performance tonight i would have to say simple drop balls were pretty frequent and laffaranchi has had a form dip, but great performance. also their is now flair in the titans attack again with short kicks, spreading the ball and building enterprising plays up and the defense was also 9/10 for me.

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    also keep this team except someone has to make one omission for harrison, and taga and rogers were outstanding new combo in the centres.


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