Hayne Firing from the Back
Last week it was his running game that tore the Tigers apart, but on Friday night Jarryd Hayne used his classy ball skills to lead the Titans to victory over the Dragons. Hayne caused havoc on the right edge of the field last week as he used his footwork to cross for a double. The Dragons had clearly made an effort to shut down Hayne’s running game on Friday night, which unfortunately for the Red V created plenty of space for his outside men. In the 32nd minute Hayne popped up on the right edge to quickly link with Konrad Hurrell, providing room for Anthony Don to finish in the corner. He then put the Dragons to bed in the second half, once again appearing on the right edge before firing a perfect cut out pass to set up Don’s third try.
Dragons Starting to Slip
They shocked the competition by starting the season on fire and racing out to a top 4 spot, however it appears that reality is beginning to kick in for the Dragons at the worst time of the year. The Red V have now lost 6 of their past 9 games, sinking down to 7th position on the ladder. With the Eels sitting equal with them on 20 points and the Panthers and Warriors lurking at the foot of the top 8 on 16 points, the Dragons are in danger of missing out on the finals unless they can quickly return to the form that had the soaring at the beginning of the year. The Dragons are clearly lacking confidence in their attack, opting to take the penalty goal on two occasions, despite facing a Gold Coast side who are a bottom 4 defensive side. Their lacklustre attack was only able to come up with one try, as they failed to apply any real pressure all night.
The Don Keeps getting it Done
He doesn’t quite have the blinding speed of Josh Addo-Carr or the athletic ability of Jordan Rapana, but Titans winger Anthony Don has once again left fans in awe with his ability to find the try line, and find it frequently. The Don crossed for another 3 tries on Friday night, taking his season tally to 8. Although his 2nd and 3rd tries were simply a case of him being in the right position at the right time, Don’s first try of the night is guaranteed to feature in the impressive highlight reel he’s built so far this season. Ash Taylor’s chip to the corner appeared to be too deep for the winger, until the 29 year old stuck one hand out into the air and managed to calmly juggle the ball three times with the one hand before eventually gaining control and placing the ball down for an impressive try.
Blues for the Red V
Dragons fans weren’t the only ones with cause for concern after Friday night, as Laurie Daley will be waiting anxiously to find out the extent of injuries suffered by Blues duo Tyson Frizell and Josh Dugan. Frizell was forced from the field in the 45th after being troubled by a reoccurring rib injury, while Dugan suffered an injury to his right knee. The pair were unable to finish the match, and it’s yet to be revealed if they will be fit enough for the State of Origin decider in 10 days.
Gold Coast Titans 20
Goals Roberts 2/4, Taylor 1
St George Ilawarra Dragons 10
Goals: Widdop 3/3