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  1. #1
    Moderator Bayside Titan's Avatar
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    Default BOOM Titans Boys And Girls.

    Quest NewsSport
    Hot tip: The Gold Coast Titans boom schoolboy and schoolgirl signings
    Hot tip: A guide to some of the Gold Coast Titans best schoolboy and schoolgirl academy player signings.
    Andrew Dawson
    Andrew Dawson

    November 29, 2021 - 12:30AM
    Quest Newspapers

    Mabel Park SHS students Jaydah Tofae, Malaela Su’â, Tahliya Tavita, Shaylee Joseph, Kaylani Tavita and Athena Vili all train with the Gold Coast Titans academy. Picture, John Gass


    Big Tino Fa’asuamaleaui retention is more than just the Gold Coast Titans keeping a State of Origin standard player.
    It also sent a message to his band of younger “brothers and sisters” at the club that the Titans is a happening club on the way up.

    For a club like the Gold Coast which is building from the ground up, the likes of Fa’asuamaleaui and David Fifita are role models for an army of schoolboys and schoolgirls working hard in the Titans’ academy.


    They look up to the Queensland State of Origin forwards and how they act and what they do influences the youth.


    The pair are part of the Coast’s short term future, but also their long term future because a lure for teenagers to accept invitations to train at the Coast’s academy is the chance to train with Fa’asuamaleaui and Fifita in the off-season.

    Below is snapshot of just some of that youth talent hand picked by Justin Holbrook (NRL coach) and Jamie Feeney (NRLW coach) to train at the club’s academy.

    .
    Palm Beach Currumbin State High School’s Tom Weaver and Oskar Bryant are Titians’ signings.
    TOM WEAVER

    From the same school as the Titans new No. 7 Toby Sexton. Like Sexton, Weaver was a 2021 Australian schoolboys (merit) side selection. The goalkicking playmaker won premierships this season with Tweed Seagulls (Meninga Cup) and PBC SHS (Phil Hall Cup).


    XAVIER STOWERS

    A towering prop who is a relative rugby league novice after playing rugby union as a youth. But the Marsden SHS school leaver had expert on the job training in the Langer Trophy this season and stood up well from start to finish. He will only get better and better.

    RYAN FORAN

    One of our favourites from the 2021 Langer Trophy season, Foran was a left edge backrower for Palm Beach Currumbin who, like the tide, just kept coming and coming until eventually overwhelming whatever was in front of him.


    JACK CULLEN

    Joined Tom Weaver and PBC SHS teammate Ryan Foran in the Australian Schoolboys merit side this year. A prop who is built low to the ground, he often wins the ruck and can also ball play. He is a top notch prospect.


    WILL SEMU and TAELON TE-SHIU HOPA

    Will Semu and ball-playing forward Taelon Te-Shiu Hopa are among the best junior signings in the league. The boys are young - they have another two years of Langer Trophy ahead of them - but Gold Coast have done well to snare them. Semu is a centre and Te-Shiu Hopa a creative forward who is so skilful, he was used at halfback this season during Marsden SHS’s Langer Trophy campaign.


    OSKAR BRYANT

    A childhood friend and teammate of Tom Weaver, Bryant was unlucky to miss Australian schoolboy merit team selection. The brother of Big Bash cricketer Max, Bryant brings his forwards on the ball, but has an upbeat running game and a great long pass from dummy half which opens up the field for his playmakers.


    JOSIAH PAHULU and SHANNON STEWART

    Two outstanding Ipswich SHS talents, with Pahulu a particularly exciting front row talent. His middle forward performances earlier in the year played him into the 16-18 years Queensland schoolboys side, and he also made our Langer Trophy Team of the Year top 17. Centre Stewart is a highly ranked centre. The Titans also have Walters Cup player Isaac Togia in their junior academy.


    JAYDEN WRIGHT

    Slightly in the shadow of an all-star pack, edge backrower Wright deservedly earned selection in the Queensland 16-18 years merit side earlier in the year.

    BROCK PRIESTLY and BAILEY MARTIN

    Both Priestly and Bailey were unsung heroes in the all-conquering PBC SHS side. The tall, raw-boned Priestly was particularly impressive. He is a middle forward, but with the mobility of an edge backrower who gave his team great run and agility coming out of their own end.

    TANA NONA

    Watch for young Nona to come into his own in 2022 playing Langer Trophy now Oskar Bryant has graduated from year 12 from PBC SHS. A Walters Cup match winner in 2019, Nona can play half or dummy half and when Tom Weaver missed the start of the season, the PBC SHS attack did not miss a beat with him at No.7. As a dummy half he is a real livewire who would come on after Oskar Bryant had started. He will be in year 12 next year.

    KEANO KINI

    Mark down the name Keano Kini, who came from New Zealand especially to play in the Langer Trophy this season with PBC SHS. A fullback who can transition to left five-eight, Kini was joint winner of the Justin Hodges Medal for Langer Trophy player of the year. He hails from the Marist club in Auckland.

    MICHAEL ROBERTS

    The brother of NRL speed machine James Roberts, Michael was a matchwinner in the southern conference grand final when he broke the hearts of Marsden SHS with a run away try. But the kid has more than pace. Coach Tim Maccan moved him from the wing to right five-eight and that is where he will start in the 2022 Langer Trophy for PBC SHS.

    IMMANIAL KALEKALE, SETH NIKOTEMO and ARAMA HAU

    Kalekale was a rousing, mobile middle forward expertly coached by Glen Campbell at Keebra Park SHS, and Nikotemo a dynamic edge backrower, also for Keebra Park SHS. Hau is a big, mobile middle forward with plenty of skill, a real talent.


    JOSEPH SHANNON and CALEB GOULD-WAIARIKI

    Coombabah SHS talents Joseph Shannon (prop) and halfback gun Caleb Gould-Waiariki spearheaded their school’s return to the Langer Trophy. Gould-Waiariki was a class act in 2021 with both his school side and the Burleigh Bears.


    DOMINIQUE SANDOW and SIONE FOUTIKA

    The boys are chips off the old bloke, with Chris Sandow’s nephew Dominique Sandow and Moeaki Foutika’s brother Sione Foutika academy members. Like his brother Foutika does the little things right and has a big motor. Sandow, a fullback, gained great experience in the Marsden SHS squad in 2021 after making the huge decision to leave his home town in the South Burnett region. He has excellent organisational skills and a passing game from the back.


    The Titans NRLW build-up under coach Jamie Feeney also continues at pace, with outstanding local talent being scooped up.

    Some of the pick of the crop include members of the Keebra Park SHS Karyn Murphy Cup winning team like Tiana Raftstrand-Smith, Skyla Adams, Chantay Ratu, Anne-Marie Ratu, Sunny Gerrard and Faith Tutauha, among others, with Adam’s ball play and Ratu’s running game impressing this season.

    Mabel Park SHS have Shaylee Joseph, Malaela Su’a, Athena Vili, Jaydah Tofae, Kaylani and Tahliya Tavita who accepted invitations.

    Su’a has a big motor with skill to burn who can play No. 13 or centre, while Joseph’s sister Keilee is close to making her NRLW debut for the Roosters.


    Marsden SHS, the old school of star recruit Destiny Brill, has delivered to the Titans 19s years academy talents such as Oshamis, Atlanta Peters, Trinity Ve’etutu, Charmayne Pakura, Ana Drotini, Dilyza Leugamafa and Rialey Baty who is an eye-catching centre or edge talent.

    The club’s 17s academy also has Marsden SHS players Sienna Lofipo, India Seeto and Mercedez Tauleilei-Siala.


    Ipswich SHS young guns Rilee Jorgenson, Tarleah Fisher-Pearson, Teresa Elika, Lina Tanielu, Arania Henderson are in either the 17s or 19s academy, while PBC SHS has Siennna Laing as a member of the Titans 19s academy.

    Woodridge SHS’s Eliza Lopamaua is also in the Titans 17s academy.

    The Titans catchment also stretches beyond Logan and Ipswich to southern Brisbane where Stretton State College has several girls in the club’s academy.

    Leilani Tuqiri: The cousin of dual international Lote Tuqiri, Leiani is a halfback and under 15 state merit side player;

    Harmony Betham: Another Titans academy member and Queensland under 15 merit selection;

    Bailee Williams: A nice dummy half who is also training with the Titans after making the under 15 Met West side.



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  2. #2
    Moderator lonegull's Avatar
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    Great story and it goes to show that our junior academies and the JTS system is going to have a massive impact in the next few years and into the future

  3. #3
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    There is little doubt that the NRL squad can have a huge knock-on effect with the juniors ... as full time professionals their time can be productively spent supporting those systems rather than becoming playstation nerds ... onwards and upwards.
    Four reasons to escape to Queensland: Sun, Surf, Sand & the Titans.

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    A few errors but a great article all the same.

  5. #5
    Moderator Bayside Titan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mdrew View Post
    A few errors but a great article all the same.
    Isn’t Kino with the Broncos ?
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    No mate Keano Kini is one of ours thankfully

    Quote Originally Posted by Bayside Titan View Post
    Isn’t Kino with the Broncos ?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bayside Titan View Post
    Isn’t Kino with the Broncos ?
    You're probably thinking of Deine Mariner BT. Kini is one the Titans have had signed for a while.

    Nice article from Andrew Dawson despite a few inaccuracies with some names who are no longer signed to the Titans, and some names omitted who should probably be on the list as well.

    I know I harp on about it but our junior pathways and recruitment is so far improved from where it has been historically that it doesn't even seem like the same club. Guys like Sexton & JC are just the tip of the iceburg. It is something to be excited about.
    Last edited by Hail Sezer; 30-11-21 at 07:29 AM.

  8. #8
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    Absolutely spot one mate

    Quote Originally Posted by Hail Sezer View Post
    You're probably thinking of Deine Mariner BT. Kini is one the Titans have had signed for a while.

    Nice article from Andrew Dawson despite a few inaccuracies with some names who are no longer signed to the Titans, and some names omitted who should probably be on the list as well.

    I know I harp on about it but our junior pathways and recruitment is so far improved from where it has been historically that it doesn't even seem like the same club. Guys like Sexton & JC are just the tip of the iceburg. It is something to be excited about.


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