Jeff Dickinson-Fox reviews the campaign which saw Melbourne Storm crowned premiers in 2017.
3 days ago
The Gold Coast Titans have held solid in defence to defeat the Manly Sea Eagles 16-14 at Skilled Park in front of 13,168 fans.
A tough and entertaining game on the Gold Coast with chances coming for both sides. The Titans built pressure with three line drop outs inside five minutes. Both sides showed tough goal line defence with no tries scored in the opening 40 minutes.
The only points scored in the first half were at a loss with Ashley Harrison taken off the field on a medi-cab after taking a shoulder charge from Manly's Richie Fa'aoso. He was placed on report as a result, and the Titans opted for the penalty goal which was converted by Aidan Sezer.
At half time, the Gold Coast just in front with a 2-0 lead.
The second half saw more attacking football with four tries scored, however the penalty goals ended the difference between the sides.
The Titans posted first points 46 minutes into the contest with Ryan James running hard on a short pass manages to charge through the Manly defence and crash in under the sticks. Aidan Sezer with the conversion adds the two points. Titans 8-0.
Albert Kelly has been a good half for the Titans so far in 2013 and tonight his kicking game brings up the Titans second four-pointer. David Mead raced through the line to beat Brett Stewart to the ball in goal to ground the Steeden. Sezer from the touchline split the uprights to extend the lead. Titans 14-0.
Manly turned the tide only minutes later as they game themselves hope with a try in the 56th minute. Jorge Taufua was awarded his four-pointer by the video referee after Kieran Foran ran a great play taking on the Titans defence. Foran provided a quick pass to Steve Matai who tipped on to Taufua in the corner. Jamie Lyon from the touchline unable to add the extras.
The score closed to 14-8.
Inside the final 10 minutes and the pressure on the Sea Eagles to fight back. The video referee brought into the contest again to review a possible try to Jorge Taufua as he dived on a short grubber kick from Steve Matai in the corner. On review the green lights spun up and the game locked up at 14-all as Jamie Lyon converted from the sidelne.
The Titans' defence held strong in the final minutes as they closed out the victory with a penalty goal off the boot of Aidan Sezer. Manly conceded the penalty as they sent the goal line drop out on the full.
Manly unable to fight back as they were defeated by the Titans, 16-14.
Next week Manly travel to Gosford as they host the Wests Tigers at Bluetongue who are coming off a good victory over the Parramatta Eels. Meanwhile the Gold Coast head south to Penrith to clash with the Panthers at Centrebet Stadium.
GOLD COAST TITANS (16)
LeagueUnlimited.com Player of the match:
1. Aidan Sezer (3 points)
2. Albert Kelly (2 points)
3. Jorge Taufua (1 point)