The South Sydney Rabbitohs are proving to be a hoodoo side for the Titans with a 40-18 victory at Cbus Super Stadium tonight taking their record to five successive victories over the Titans since 2010.
It was heavy back-to-back losses to the foundation club after going down 32-4 at the same venue.
The iSelect Titans have been beaten 40-18 by South Sydney at Cbus Super Stadium tonight - the fifth straight loss to the Rabbitohs since 2010.
The Titans were behind 22-0 after just 16 minutes but fought back to 22-12 at the break before the Rabbitohs, with Sam and George Burgess and Greg Inglis in great form, ran away with the match. Souths centre Dylan Walker was also outstanding and scored four tries.
iSelect Titans coach John Cartwright said his side was lucky to go into half-time trailing 22-12 after conceding four tries in the opening 16 minutes and missing 29 tackles.
“They blew us away. We probably didn’t deserve to be that close to them but we were,” Cartwright said.
“To get back to within ten points at half-time we didn’t deserve to be there but I thought that might have sparked us but we were just outplayed by a better side tonight.”
Despite clawing their way back into the game, Souths put an end to any second-half Titans’ heroics by scoring three-tries-to-one in the second 40 minutes with centre Dylan Walker bagging two second-half tries to give him four tries for the game.
“I don’t take anything away from Souths; they were red-hot tonight and they are the best side we’ve played this year,” Cartwright said.
“We probably started the second-half the same way we started the first-half with poor discipline we gave them six-again and they scored, we were a little bit lazy on covering that kick and they scored and realistically then it was going to be tough.”
Titans co-captain Nate Myles said his side was blown away by the robust Rabbitohs team in the opening 20 minutes and it was always going to be tough to get back into the contest.
“We just didn’t start with them at all, the first 20 minutes was awful on our part. We did do a little bit there to get back in the game but once they started rolling through the middle it was hard to hang on,” Myles said.
“Like Carty said they are the best team we’ve played this year. That first 20 was incredible for them, it was really hard to try and get up and slow it down.
“When you’ve got that size and speed coming at you it does take a little bit to get back on top and we did that for a couple of sets.
“We can’t afford to give a team like Souths a lead like that especially when they’ve got players that can hurt you from anywhere on the field.”
It was a bad start for the Titans with the Rabbitohs scoring on Souths’ first through Walker who showed immense speed from dummy-half in creating space for his outside-backs before supporting on the inside to score next to the posts, giving Adam Reynolds an easy conversion and the visitors a 6-0 lead after three minutes.
From the following set the Rabbitohs crossed the line through Kirosome Auva’a, but the decision was sent upstairs after there appeared to be a hint of a double-movement. The video-referee ruled momentum carried Auva’a across the line and awarded the try to see the Titans trail 10-0 after eight minutes.
It went from bad to worse for the Titans with Walker again showing illusive speed from dummy-half to outpace the Titans defence to score out wide and with Reynolds adding the extras the Rabbitohs lead 16-0 after just ten minutes of play.
With all the momentum and possession in their favour, the Rabbitohs continued to run riot and extended their lead in the 15th minute after Reynolds fired a pass to Alex Johnston to score in the corner before Bryson Goodwin added the extras to give the visitors a 22-0 lead.
The Titans needed to be the next to score and it took a brave play from Anthony Don in the 25th minute who snatched an intercept off a John Sutton pass before racing 60 metres downfield to score and give Aidan Sezer an easy conversion to reduce the margin to 22-6.
With the possession starting to even out, the Titans began to settle their sets and were rewarded in the 38th minute when Don grabbed his second try after cleaning up an Albert Kelly bomb. With Sezer adding the extras from out wide the Titans reeled the half-time deficit back to 22-12.
The Rabbitohs started the second-half in similar fashion to the first with Sutton and Reynolds combining to put a neat grubber in for Walker who pounced on the ball to bag his third try of the night just next to the uprights giving Goodwin an easy conversion to extend their lead to 28-12.
The Rabbitohs continued to build momentum and threaten the Titans’ line managing to get across the line on two occasions through George Burgess and Walker only to be denied on both occasions by the video-referee.
There was no stopping the Rabbitohs in the 65th minute with superstar fullback Greg Inglis producing a miracle offload to Walker to cross for his fourth try of the night and with Goodwin converting the try, the Rabbitohs took a 34-12 lead.
With the momentum now firmly in their favour, the Rabbitohs produced another trademark play with a barnstorming George Burgess run leading to Johnston scoring under the posts to edge the visitors out to a 40-12 lead with just over ten minutes remaining.
The Titans managed to score a consolation try through Dave Taylor 90 seconds from the end to bring the full-time deficit back to 40-18.
The Titans will look to hit back when they take on the Brisbane Broncos at Suncorp Stadium on Friday, looking for a second win in the local derby after an impressive round six victory.
South Sydney Rabbitohs 40 (D Walker 4, A Johnston 2, K Auva’a, tries; B Goodwin 4, A Reynolds 2 goals) defeated Gold Coast Titans 18 (A Don 2, D Taylor tries; A Sezer 3 goals). Crowd: 19, 107.