James front and centre at Titans’ Lismore visit
GOLD Coast Titans front-rower Ryan James is on track to return from an ACL injury which cut short his 2019 season in the National Rugby League.
James was captain at the time and was front and centre when the Titans visited the Rivers Secondary College’s Richmond River Campus in North Lismore yesterday.
The full squad were there with new coach Justin Holbrook as they held a question-and-answer session and signed autographs for a room full of kids.
It was the Titans only stop on the way to a preseason camp at Coffs Harbour.
“I’ve been out injured since April and it would be great to get through a full season next year,” James said.
“We didn’t have a great year on the field but we’re looking forward to next season under a new coach.
“There is a positive feeling at the club and it’s great to be here with the full squad and spend a couple of days together as a team.
“It’s always good to give back and I know how much rugby league means to this community.
“I played here a lot as a junior and there are plenty of kids from the Northern Rivers who have made it in the NRL.”
One of those players is Ballina junior Brian Kelly who now plays in the centres with the Titans.
He is looking forward to his fourth season in the NRL after making his debut at Manly in 2017.
“We want to start well next season and I feel like I’ve settled in to play week in and week out in the NRL,” Kelly said.
“I’ll have a full preseason under my belt this year and the confidence is definitely there.
“Justin (Holbrook) actually coached me in the junior Kangaroos team so I’m looking forward to playing under him again.
“He has a good record in (English) Super League and it’s up to us to rip in now.”