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Golden Titans pip Dragons in extra time
A field goal in the last minute of golden point from Mat Rogers has seen the Gold Coast Titans upset the St George Illawarra Dragons 11-10 in a tense clash at Kogarah's WIN Jubilee Oval.
In a match they needed to win to maintain their position in the top eight, the Titans trailed 10-6 at the break before scoring the only second half try to lock the game up at 10-all in the 53rd minute.
With neither team able to crack the opposition defence again in regular time, the match went to golden point. Both sides had a number of unsuccessful attempts at field goal and, with just less than sixty seconds on the clock, the contest looked headed for a rare draw.
However, that was until the wily Rogers caught the Dragons by surprise - the veteran five-eighth scooped up the ball at dummy half and cooly slotted the one pointer from point blank distance to give the Gold Coast a crucial win.
Earlier, the Titans opened the scoring in just the third minute when Anthony Laffranchi carried defenders forward to reach out and score.
But the Dragons eventually hit back thanks to Ben Creagh - the second rower barged over out wide to lock the scores up at 6-all after 23 minutes.
St. George Illawarra dominated field position for the remainder of the half but failed to break a resolute Titans outfit, instead relying on two Jamie Soward penalty goals to increase their lead to 10-6 at the change of ends.
The sole try in the second half came when Titans winger Kevin Gordon dotted down in the corner on the back of a sweeping backline movement. Scott Prince's sideline conversion hit the posts to ensure the score stayed at 10-all.
The deadlock was eventually broken in the 90th minute of play thanks to the boot of Rogers.
The win revitalises Gold Coast's season and temporarily moves them into sixth position on the ladder, while the Dragons remain in top spot ahead of their highly anticipated clash with the Brisbane Broncos next Sunday afternoon.
St George Illawarra Dragons 10 were defeated by Gold Coast Titans 11
National Rugby League - NRL - Round 20 - Friday July 23, 2010 7:35pm
Venue: WIN Jubilee Oval, Kogarah
Referee: Ben Cummins and Tony De Las Heras
Video Referee: Paul Simpkins
Touch Judges: Jeff Younis and David Abood
Halftime: St George Illawarra Dragons 10 Gold Coast Titans 6
St George Illawarra Dragons (10)
Tries: Ben Creagh
Field Goals: Jamie Soward (0/2)
Conversions: Jamie Soward (1/1)
Penalty Goals: Jamie Soward (2/2)
Gold Coast Titans (11)
Tries: Anthony Laffranchi, Kevin Gordon
Field Goals: Mat Rogers (1/2), Scott Prince (0/2)
Conversions: Scott Prince (1/2)
LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary Welcome to Kogarah for the clash between St George Illawarra Dragons and Gold Coast Titans.
It's a big game for the Titans in particular, a loss will probably see them drop out of the top eight. They've been hit hard with injuries though - Ashley Harrison and Greg Bird are the latest editions to the casualty ward. On the other hand, Jeremy Smith and Matt Cooper return to the Dragons to give the competition front runners even more strike power. It's hard to see them losing this one.
My tip: Dragons by 13+
St George claimed the U20s 34-12.
For all the late team changes, click the 'Team Lists' button.
1 min: Kick off!
3 min: Video referee - possible Titans try..
3 min: TRY
The Titansw get six again on the Dragons line before Anthony Laffranchi shows good leg drive to carry defenders forward and then reach out to score under the posts. Scott Prince converts.
Gold Coast Titans 6-0
5 min: Perfect start there for the Gold Coast, as the rain continues to fall.
7 min: A big kick from Jamie Soward skips dead over the deadball line.
9 min: Dragons get a penalty to put them on the attack for the first time tonight.
10 min: Darius Boyd throws the long cut out pass to Morris but he can't field it and it goes out - shades of Origin Three there from Brett Morris..
12 min: Both teams playing conservative footy in the pounding rain.
15 min: Matt Cooper is dragged down inches short and Jeremy Smith drops the ball on the next tackle. It's not going to plan at the moment for St George.
19 min: Gold Coast making more metres than their opponents - the Dragons with a 20m tap after Prince kicks dead.
22 min: Soward grubbers into the ingoal but Steve Michaels bats it dead, St George attacking the Gold Coast line for the third set in a row.
23 min: Video referee - possible Dragons try..
23 min: TRY
Ben Creagh steamrolls through some weak defence on the fringe and he slams the ball down one handed. Jamie Soward converts.
25 min: Brett Morris streaks down the left flank but is taken down by a brilliant one on one tackle from Preston Campbell at the back.
27 min: PENALTY GOAL
The Dragons get a penalty for the Titans failing to run back onside. Jamie Soward slots the two to give his side the lead for the first time tonight.
St George Illawarra Dragons 8-6
28 min: Dragons domination possession and the penalty count, they're getting some momentum now.
29 min: Mark Gasnier about to enter the fray in his third match back in the NRL.
30 min: Scott Prince bombs wide to Zillman but for the second time tonight he misjudges his leap completely and misses the ball.
35 min: Don't want to sound like a broken record but Prince bombs high again on the last tackle but kicks it out on the full. They haven't got a result from a high kick yet, perhaps Prince should move on to Plan B..
37 min: Morris hits and spins on the kick return and nearly breaks through the line.
38 min: Video referee - possible Dragons try..
38 min: No Try! Shannon Walker spills the bomb but Jamie Soward is ruled to have knocked on in attempting to pick up the ball. Dragons get the penalty though for Luke Bailey being accidentally offside.
39 min: PENALTY GOAL
St George Illawarra Dragons PENALTY GOAL
Jamie Soward slots the kick after Luke Bailey was penalised for accidental offside.
St George Illawarra Dragons 10-6
Halftime: With the rain pouring down at Kogarah, it's been a rather subdued affair. The Titans have done well to restrict the Dragons to just one try but two penalty goals have given the home team an important four point advantage. St George have yet to lose in 2010 after leading a match at the break..
41 min: Underway in the second half! Titans need to find a way to win this to ensure they stay in the top eight.
42 min: Michael Henderson pops an offload to Shannon Walker, who races away down field but is taken by the cover defence.
44 min: Titans force a dropout off a Prince grubber and a penalty gives them another six hot on the attack.
46 min: Well exciting start to the half! Kevin Gordon dives for the corner but is held up by Mark Gasnier.
49 min: Dragons focusing most of their attack up the centre, they haven't found any inroads just yet though.
52 min: Shannon Walker somehow catches a massive Jamie Soward bomb, he looked all at sea but did well to hold it.
53 min: Gold Coast get a scrum feed on the Dragons 20 metre line after a Boyd error.
53 min: TRY
Gold Coast Titans TRY
The Gold Coast put on a sweeping backline movement before a pinpoint pass finds an unmarked Kevin Gordon on the wing. Scott Prince fails to convert from the sideline.
57 min: Shannon Walker knocks on fielding a routine kick, he can come up with some brilliant plays but golly he makes simple mistakes.
59 min: Ben Creagh and Gasnier are both denied by strong Titans defence - they're hanging on for their lives at the moment.
60 min: Brett Morris is dragged into touch, tsk tsk, you can't go that close to the sideline in these conditions.
63 min: A Mat Rogers kick looks to have Boyd pinned in the ingoal but he steps his way out.
65 min: Preston Campbell comes up with a, dare I say it, AFL-style catch on the shoulders of Jamie Soward.
65 min: With just fifteen minutes to go, it's starting to look like field goal time.
69 min: Gold Coast working the ball off their own line, as Bailey makes another determined run.
70 min: Brett Morris wills a ball dead but it doesn't comply, he still manages to get back into the field on play though.
73 min: William Zillman loses the ball on a kick return but Luke Priddis returns the favour on the next tackle! Big opportunity missed for the Dragons there.
74 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT
Scott Prince attempts a field goal but it doesn't have the legs, or the direction.
76 min: Dragons work the ball off their line, as Cooper almost gets away from Clinton Toopi.
77 min: Just three minutes to go now, the Titans might be in range at the end of this set..
78 min: A huge Prince bomb is claimed by Jason Nightingale, big pressure but he held his nerve.
79 min: The Dragons take a 20 metre tap but with the clock winding it down, it looks like we're set for Golden Point!
80 min: St George with a scrum feed 40 metres out with under twently seconds left..
80 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT
Jamie Soward with a field goal attempt from 40 metres out but it's far too short
81 min: With the scoreline locked at 10-all, we're heading to Golden Point Extra Time!
81 min: The Gold Coast get first use of the ball.
82 min: St George working it out from their own half as the crowd scream for a penalty.
83 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT
Mat Rogers tries his luck with a field goal attempt but it's charged down by Gasnier.
84 min: Scott Prince kicks for the ingoal but Soward swoops across and saves the day.
85 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT
Jamie Soward goes from 40 metres out, it looks very good off the boot! But it just goes wide..
86 min: Halftime of extra time now, the teams switch ends and the Titans kick off.
86 min: Both sides looks very tired, it's been a real slog.
87 min: The Titans run the ball on the fifth before kicking and Boyd gets pinned in the corner.
88 min: Now the Dragons run it! The defence converges and Nightingale gets a kick away..
89 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT
Prince has an attempt but he takes too long and it gets charged down.
90 min: FIELD GOAL
Mat Rogers kicks a field goal in the final minute of extra time! The ball was played 10 metres out, right in front and Rogers just picked up the ball from dummy half and slotted it over. Cool as a cucumber!
Gold Coast Titans 11-10