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MATCH PREVIEW | Gold Coast Titans vs Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles

Todd Warren previews the Titans vs Sea Eagles as we get to the crucial part of the season.

TEAM FORM GUIDE

Gold Coast Titans

The Titans are still running 15th and desperate to avoid the wooden spoon. Once again I have to type the word ‘inconsistency’ about them as they followed a great win against the Broncos with a disappointing performance against the Warriors.

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Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles

Manly are exceeding expectations this season, sitting in sixth and on the upswing with players returning from injury/Origin. They are coming in hot with back-to-back wins against the Dragons and the Cowboys.

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SQUAD NEWS

Gold Coast Titans

Jai Arrow is out – some reports say six weeks and some say twelve – in a massive blow for a team that was already struggling. Jai Whitbread is at lock and Kevin Proctor is on the extended bench and a chance to return from a facial fracture he suffered early in the season. Big-money recruits Shannon Boyd and Tyrone Peachey are both named to play from the bench. Rumour is that Peachey will be released to return to Penrith (on compassionate grounds) and this could even be his last game for the team that offered him big money. Disappointing for this to happen to the Titans again, but Tyrone has hardly been great since making the move, so perhaps it’s best for everyone if he leaves.

Gold Coast Titans team list:

1. AJ Brimson 2. Anthony Don 3. Jesse Arthars 4. Brian Kelly 5. Dale Copley 6. Tyrone Roberts 7. Ryley Jacks 8. Jarrod Wallace 9. Nathan Peats 10. Moeaika Fotuaika 11. Will Matthews 12. Bryce Cartwright 13. Jai Whitbread 14. Mitch Rein 15. Tyrone Peachey 16. Jack Stockwell 17. Shannon Boyd 18. Leilani Latu 19. Phillips Sami 20. Brenko Lee 21. Kevin Procter.

Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles

Api Koroisau and Jack Gosiewski are both out. Manase Fainu starts at hooker and Brendan Elliot is on the bench. Daly Cherry-Evans, Jake Trbojevic and Tom Trbojevic are all named to back up from Origin two, with Tommy Turbo one of the scariest X-factor players in the competition. He’s fresh off scoring a hat-trick in Origin two and running for 341 metres with 9 tackle busts in the win against the Dragons, so who knows what he will do to a team with no confidence and without two of their biggest names in Jai Arrow and Ash Taylor?

Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles team list:

1. Tom Trbojevic 2. Jorge Taufua 3. Dylan Walker 4. Moses Suli 5. Reuben Garrick 6. Cade Cust 7. Daly Cherry-Evans 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Manase Fainu 10. Martin Taupau 11. Joel Thompson 12. Curtis Sironen 13. Jake Trbojevic 14. Brendan Elliot 15. Corey Waddell 16. Morgan Boyle 17. Taniela Paseka 18. Lachlan Croker 19. Kane Elgey 20. Haumole Olakau’atu 21. Lloyd Perrett.

HEAD TO HEAD

These sides have been evenly matched the last few seasons, with both taking five wins from the last ten matches. The Titans have won four of the last five, including the last three games.

 

KEY BATTLE

AJ Brimson vs Tom Trbojevic. AJ Brimson is undoubtedly a player with huge potential who probably could have won Dally M Rookie Of The Year honours last year if he played the full season. He is up against it this week when his opposite number is the form player in the NRL: even though he’s only played two club games and one Origin since he went down injured just after half time in round four. The Titans really don’t have many attacking threats and they need Brimson to have a blinder if they are any chance of getting the two points here.

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THE IMPORTANT DETAILS

Date: Saturday June 29
Venue: CBUS Super Stadium
Kick-off: 3pm
Referee: Chris Sutton, Phil Henderson

WHO WILL WIN?

Hard to see the Titans getting the win here, but no one thought they’d beat the Broncos either, so who knows? Manly have more Origin players, but backing up is a non-issue with six days between games. It pains me to type this but my money is on Manly to get a big win.

Sea Eagles by 20.

 

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