Titans to roll out big guns
By BARRY CHEADLE THE Gold Coast Titans will roll out their big guns when they take on the Parramatta Eels at Oakes Oval, Lismore, on Saturday night.
Titans communications manager Jason Sintome yesterday confirmed that the Gold Coast's major signings ? Luke Bailey, Preston Campbell, Scott Prince, Mat Rogers, Jake Webster, Matt Peterson, Luke O'Dwyer and Anthony Lafranchi ? would be named in the side to take on the Eels.
The Titans spent yesterday still in Coffs Harbour where they made their NRL debut on Saturday with a 34-6 loss to last year's beaten grand finalists, the Melbourne Storm.
Yesterday they had a training session, followed by lunch with local Aboriginal Elders, and then went back into training.
And according to Sintome, the morale was sky-high after Saturday's effort which saw a second-string Titans line-up hold the Storm to a 12-6 lead until the last 20 minutes.
Most of those Titans who played in Coffs Harbour were drawn from the Queensland State League competition, and Sintome said their performance should dispel any doubts about the Titans' depth for their debut season.
"We're absolutely delighted," he said.
"I think we silenced a lot of our critics (who questioned the club's depth)."
Sintome said it was an 'awesome opportunity' for coach John Cartwright to see how well the lower-graders performed.
The team will spend the rest of this week in Coffs Harbour. Meanwhile, Parramatta, under new coach, former Newcastle Knights mentor Michael Hagan, also fielded an under-strength side in a trial against Cronulla in Parkes at the weekend, but came away with an impressive 36-14 win.
The Eels will name their side after training tonight, but are expected to be closer to their regular first-grade line-up.
Saturday's game kicks off at 7.30pm. The match will be preceded by a game between the Northern Rivers Academy team and Seagulls Colts at 4pm, followed by Tweed Seagulls' State League side taking on Ipswich State League side.
Tickets: Phone 13 28 49, go to www.ticktek.com or buy them over the counter at Bush Telegraph Internet Services, 93 Molesworth Street, Lismore.