Canberra Raiders Scorers: Jarrod Croker, Anthony Milford
Goals: Jarrod Croker 2/2
Gold Coast Titans Scorers: Beau Falloon, Paul Carter, Albert Kelly 2
Goals: Greg Bird 4/6
Gold Coast Titans picked up their second win of the NRL season thanks to a late double from halfback Albert Kelly in a game that was in the balance for the full 80 minutes.
Gold Coast kept the Raiders scoreless in the second half as they battled hard to victory by overturning a 12-6 deficit at half time to run out 12-24 winners.
The game started with an intense arm wrestle in which neither side could get the upper hand until on 14 minutes when Gold Coast hooker Beau Falloon ducked his way under the Raiders defence from close range to ground the ball well. Greg Bird added the extras to give his side a 0-6 lead.
Jarrod Croker level the game when he pounced on a precise grubber kick to continue his great form so far this season. He converted his own try to make it 6-6 after 24 minutes.
The arm wrestle continued for the remainder of the half and it looked like the sides would be going into the sheds level until Raiders fullback Anthony Milford sliced his way through the Titans defence effortlessly off the back of some good set play by the Raiders. Croker made sure the lead would be six at half time when he converted the score.
The Titans used the break best it seemed as they came out flying and took only two minutes to get back level when Paul Carter scored from dummy-half despite the attention of three Raiders defenders. Bird had the task of making it 12-12 and did so.
The Titans continued to threaten and when they had the chance of a shot at goal from a penalty they took that chance on 45 minutes with Greg Bird edging Gold Coast in front by just two.
As in the first half both sides were locked in a battle down the middle of the field and neither side could take their limited chances until Albert Kelly scored the first of his late double on 77 minutes. He looked to pass at the line from 35 metres out before his dummy caught out the tiring Raiders defence and he raced to the corner for a try. Bird’s missed conversion meant it was just a converted try between the two sides.
Canberra knew they would have to take a risk to level the scores and force golden point but in their attempts to keep the ball alive on the hooter they could only find Kelly who scooped up the loose ball to score from 55 metres out. Greg Bird made sure of his conversion to make it 12-24 to the Titans.