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Coaching The Coaches - Australian Rugby league News
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globalrugbyleague - Sun, 17 Jun 2007 10:58:00 GMT
For the very first time this year, the GRL Phantom is examining a game featuring the new NRL kids on the block, the Gold Coast Titans.

The Wests Tigers and Titans meet this afternoon at Campbelltown Stadium and hopefully the wet weather will improve by then.

The Titans are seventh on the NRL ladder and have exceeded where I feel they would be this season. I tipped them to run last.

In recent weeks their form has improved with two straight wins after three straight losses.

They are fresh from a bye and it will interesting to see if they can win after the break.

Meanwhile the Tigers are third, with Tim Sheens doing an amazing job getting the team in such a strong position at the halfway mark.

TIGERS:

Strengths:

Classy ball play, good speed and good second phase play in attack.

Defensively, the Tigers are sound, rather than brutal, they swarm accurately in numbers and scramble well.

On what we’ve seen in recent weeks, Robbie Farah, Dean Collis, Ben Galea, Todd Payten are in top form.

And what a blessing that has been with Brett Hodgson and Benji Marshall out for extended periods with injury.

Their style of play is difficult to defend against, if they allowed quick-play-the-balls.

Farrah is very good around dummy half and at first receiver in the opposition quarter-line.

Chris Lawrence is a genuine speedster who can make breaks by beating his man on the outside and in broken play.

Centre Dean Collis has made the ``right hand side of the field'' his own this year. He positions his supports outside and in very well when he makes breaks. This boy will play for NSW next year.

Paul Whatuira will give the Tigers a boost down the left side. The Kiwi international is one of the best three centres in the game.

Weaknesses:

The Tigers forwards tend to tackle low sometimes which leaves them open to off-loads from the opposition attackers.

They are not a good team when behind because then the teams overplays in attack and passes hit the ground and go way backwards rather than finding support

TITANS

Strengths:

Coach John Cartwright prepares his team superbly. They do the basics right, tackle, kick-chase and work hard for each other.

Scott Prince is in top form and comes up against his former Tigers' mates at Campbelltown.

Prince is running more this year, like he did in 2005 when he led the Tigers to the grand final win.

Matt Rogers and Brett Delaney, who play left and right centre respectively and Matt Petersen have also been very productive in attack this year.

Luke Bailey and Anthony Lanffranchi have been powerful in the forwards.

Weaknesses:

They have scored 30 tries from inside the opposition quarter , so they lack the long distance try scoring potential.

If Scott Prince has a quiet game, he does tend to drift across field too much in games at times and that's when the Titans attack tends to break down.

The forwards lack variety sometimes, running one out, and not looking for support.

The biggest problem for the Titans however is a lack of support.

At home, they have strong, partisan support. But today NSW fans will see them as another Queensland team to hate.

Verdict: The Tigers at home with a big crowd should be too skilful and will win by a dozen. - Read More, Here