The TFH Gold Coast Titans have narrowly gone down 10-8 to the Melbourne Storm in a tight affair at Cbus Super Stadium tonight.
With momentum and 60 percent of the possession in their favour in the first-half, the Titans controlled the half and shot out to an 8-0 lead after an AJ Brimson try and Ash Taylor penalty-goal.
But it was a tale of two halves with the Titans producing an ill-disciplined second-half giving away six unanswered penalties to gift the Storm prime position and they took full advantage to score two tries through Curtis Scott and Cameron Munster to come away with the win.
Despite the loss, the 14,266 strong Titans fans were gifted a glimpse of the future with Brimson again putting on a dominant display. Coming up against his childhood hero Billy Slater, who was playing in his final Queensland game, Brimson was a shining light for the Titans scoring a try and saving another two with brilliant tackles on Slater and Josh Addo-Carr.
A penalty put the home-side on the attack early and they opened the scoring in the fifth minute through boom fullback AJ Brimson who collected a deft Kane Elgey pass to race through the line and score adjacent to the posts. With Ash Taylor converting, the Titans took a slim 6-0 lead.
On the back of a repeat set off an Anthony Don grubber, the Titans were awarded a penalty in-front and opted to take the kick-at-goal to shoot out to an 8-0 lead after 13 minutes.
The game opened up with both sides playing a free-flowing style of footy and the Titans looked to have scored in the 20th minute but Taylor's pass to Don was ruled forward. The Storm then charged their way up the field and similarly got across the line only to have Curtis Scott's last pass ruled forward.
Brimson got the home-crowd on their feet in the dying minutes of the half after making a break down the left touchline before kicking ahead for Phillip Sami but Storm winger Josh Addo-Carr made a great try-saving tackle to stop him from crossing to leave the half-time score at 8-0.
Back-to-back penalties to the Storm in the opening minutes of the half put the away-side on the attack and they took full advantage with Slater getting a pass away to Scott to barge his way over and score out-wide. With Cameron Smith's conversion sailing wide, the Titans lead remained at 8-4 after 47 minutes.
The Titans were penalised again for repeated infringements and it looked like the Storm were going to make them pay in the 54th minute when Justin Olam got across the line but the PNG winger was denied by the bunker with his right boot going into touch.
There was no denying the Storm in the 60th minute with five-eighth Cameron Munster producing a one of his trademark runs to slice through the line and score out-wide. With Smith converting, the Storm took a 10-8 lead going into the final stanza.
The Titans lost Taylor for the remaining ten minutes of the game after copping a high-shot after falling into a tackle however the referee's ruled it was not worthy of a penalty.
The Titans continued to compete and had one-last attacking set on the Storm but were unable to cross the line and were forced to settle for the 10-8 loss.
The Titans will take on the North Queensland Cowboys for Jonathon Thurston's final NRL game at a sold-out Cbus Super Stadium next Saturday.
Melbourne Storm 10 (C Scott, C Munster tries; C Smith 1 goals) defeated Gold Coast Titans 8 (A Brimson tries; A Taylor 2 goals)