Last time played: Dragons v Titans
The Titans defeated the Dragons 28-14 at WIN Jubilee Oval in Round 14 last year.
A second-half blitz by the Titans overwhelmed the under-strength Dragons, who were missing a host of stars in the lead-up to the second game of the 2011 Origin series.
The visitors led 4-nil with just three minutes on the clock before two tries to the Dragons – including one to centre Alex McKinnon in his NRL debut – saw the home side take an 8-4 lead to halftime.
However, a hat-trick of tries to open the scoring in the second half put the Titans in the box seat. Captain Scott Prince commenced their assault when he grubber-kicked into the Dragons’ in-goal and won the race for the ball to score a confidence-boosting try in the 45th minute. Minutes later Mark Minichiello was given the green light for a try despite suggestions of his second-man involvement in a strip of the ball on Dragons rookie McKinnon 10 metres out. When David Mead crossed on the right edge in the 56th minute the Titans led 20-8.
McKinnon salvaged some pride for the Red V when he burst through the defence off a Nathan Fien pass to bag his second try of the night, before Matt Srama crossed off a belated Ben Ridge offload to extend the visitors’ lead to 26-14 with 12 minutes remaining. A penalty goal to Scott Prince rounded out the scoring.
Completions were the key to the Titans’ victory: they completed their sets at an impressive 85 per cent compared to their opponents’ 72 per cent. However, the scoreboard bellied their defensive effort: the Gold Coast missed 41 tackles, with the Dragons dropping off just 33.
Prince was man of the match, with a try and two try assists.
Alex McKinnon had a huge debut in the big league, scoring two tries and making three line-breaks, while Michael Weyman made a game-high 48 tackles as well as 12 hit-ups.