2023 NRL Preview Round 8: Dolphins Vs Titans

Dylan Jhugroo previews the Round 8 clash between the Dolphins and the Gold Coast Titans.



The Dolphins vs Gold Coast Titans
Venue: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Date: Sunday April 23, 2:00pm


Dolphins: 1. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 2. Jamayne Isaako 3. Euan Aitken 4. Brenko Lee 5. Robert Jennings 6. Kodi Nikorima 7. Isaiya Katoa 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Jeremy Marshall-King 10. Herman Ese’ese 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Connelly Lemuelu 13. Tom Gilbert 14. Jarrod Wallace 15. Mark Nicholls 16. Ray Stone 17. Kurt Donoghoe 18. JJ Collins 19. Poasa Faamausili 20. Edrick Lee 21. Mason Teague 22. Valynce Te Whare

Titans: 1. Jayden Campbell 2. Alofiana Khan-Pereira 3. Brian Kelly 4. Phillip Sami 5. Jojo Fifita 6. Kieran Foran 7. Tanah Boyd 8. Moeaki Fotuaika 9. Chris Randall 10. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui 11. David Fifita 12. Joe Stimson 13. Isaac Liu 14. Kruise Leeming 15. Erin Clark 16. Thomas Mikaele 17. Klese Haas 18. Jo Vuna 19. Keano Kini 20. Thomas Weaver 21. AJ Brimson 22. Sam McIntyre

Referee: Chris Butler

Embed from Getty Images


It’s yet another Queensland derby as the Dolphins take on the Gold Coast Titans for competition points for the first time in history. Felise Kaufusi will return from his four-week suspension, while Titans superstar AJ Brimson is a chance of returning after being named in the reserves.

The Dolphins showed a great deal of heart and grit in Round 7 against the Rabbitohs, with the 36-14 scoreline ultimately blowing out against them after they conceded three tries during Kenny Bromwich’s sin-bin period. But despite key absences, the Dolphins continue to show why they’re the kind of team you’d hate to play against. They’re a team quickly earning a reputation for dragging you down into a real grind, which is something their Sunday opponents the Gold Coast have struggled with in recent years.

The Titans will be disappointed with their second-half effort against the Broncos last week, after controlling the game during the early exchanges. Ultimately, a try on the brink of half-time to future Dolphin Herbie Farnworth proved the turning point. For Justin Holbrook’s side to get a result out of this week’s clash, they cannot afford to play for anything less than 80 minutes. Because you can bet your bottom dollar that Wayne Bennett’s men will.

KEY POSITIONAL MATCH UP: Two of the more explosive young fullbacks in the game come head-to-head in this fixture. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow has proved many experts wrong with his form in the number one jersey this season, and in a side without many stars in the backline, the expectation lies on his shoulders to continue that form for weeks to come.

On the other side of the park, Jayden Campbell will have taken note of Brimson’s ominous selection in the reserves list this week. If Campbell does indeed take the fullback position on Sunday, he’ll know the magnitude of performance needed for him to retain that jersey over a fully-fit Brimson.

UNDER PRESSURE: By no means is Kaufusi’s position in the team under any amount of pressure. However, with fellow star backrower Kenny Bromwich out of this clash through suspension, The Dolphins need Kaufusi to hit the ground running on his return, providing a massive boost to their forward pack.


First Meeting


Dolphins by four points.

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