2012 Toyota Cup Previews - Part 2 of 4

Gold Coast Titans
2011 Review - The Titans struggled through 2011 to finish 14th in attack, defence and on the ladder. This was mostly due to the new squad and the loss of hooker Matt Srama to the top grade after 11 games. Their wins were sporadic and rare throughout the season, but they always managed to never be disgraced by losing by large margins.
2012 Preview - A full season of learning and experiences will see the Titans improve dramatically on 2011. They will push close to the top 8, however they may lack the strike power in defence and attack to win the close games they need to scrape into the finals.

Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 
2011 Review - Debacle, that's the only way to describe it. Admittedly, Manly may have been hoping that star half Daly Cherry-Evans would play more regularly, but as it turns out, he played every NRL game, won a Premiership and became a Test player in his debut season. Given his achievements in the NRL side, it makes one wonder just how dominant the NYC team would have been with him at the scrumbase all season. Their lack of a quality replacement showed throughout the season.
2012 Preview - Manly has seen Darcy Lussick, Daniel Harrison and Tim Robinson all step up to the NRL team, leaving big shoes to fill for the incoming players. Manly will be an improved team in 2012, but whether if it's by enough to get them off the cellar floor is to be seen. But if they produce another player to have as dynamic a debut NRL season as Cherry-Evans, then the Sea-Eagles may not be too concerned.

Melbourne Storm
2011 Review - Melbourne were a consistent and tough opponent all year long, stringing together groups of wins throughout the year. They finished the season 4th and beat 5th placed Roosters in the first week of the finals, coming from behind at half time to win by a comfortable margin. They lost in week 2 to the Bulldogs after yet another spirited second half comeback, but they ran out of time and went down by 2 points.
2012 Preview - Melbourne will be one of the top teams of the competition in 2012. They had minimal losses to their very successful squad and will be a much stronger unit this time around. The loss of the brilliant and elusive Dane Chisholm to the Tigers, Kenneath Bromwich and Mahe Fonua to the NRL squad will be sorely missed, but will not cause too much disruption to the squad.

Newcastle Knights
2011 Review - The Knights NYC team, only just squeezed into the top 8 in 2011, before being belted 54-6 by the eventual premiers, Warriors. The loss of half Ryan Stig mid-season to the NRL side hampered the Knights in attack, but they managed to regroup enough to make it to the finals.
2012 Preview - With a relatively strong backline, the Knights could be a more potent attacking machine in 2012. If they can work on their defence a bit more, they can see themselves in the top 8 again this year.

Tomorrow: Cowboys, Eels, Panthers, Dragons