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The milestones keep coming for the Gold Coast Titans as they continue their fight for finals berth, with veteran prop Luke Bailey to play his 250th NRL game against premiership favourites the Roosters this Sunday at the Sydney Football Stadium.

With two rounds to go, the Titans are locked in an absorbing head-to-head tussle for eighth spot on the ladder with the North Queensland Cowboys, and only points differential separates the two Queensland teams heading into this weekend.

After an unsettled few weeks on the selection front, Titans coach John Cartwright has again been forced into a late reshuffle of his side, with strike weapons William Zillman, David Mead, Ash Harrison, Jamal Idris and Mark Minichiello all on the sideline.

In his 250th NRL game, Bailey will again come off the bench to help contain a massive Roosters pack that includes rugby league’s prodigal son, Sonny Bill Williams.

Bailey also joins a list of Titans milestone men in recent weeks, with Minichiello playing his 150th game for the Titans in last weekend’s disappointing two-point loss to the Warriors at Robina.

The week before that, Kevin Gordon scored his 50th career try, and the week before that, David Mead reached the same mark – in the same game that Luke O’Dwyer played his 100th game for the Titans.

This week though, O’Dwyer, Mead and Minichiello will all be missing as the under-strength Titans fight to stay in the finals hunt against the Roosters team captained by Minichiello’s brother Anthony.

Gordon moves to fullback in a rejigged backline that includes Brad Takairangi and Jordan Atkins in the centres, and Steve Michaels and Anthony Don on the wings.

Jamie Dowling drops back to the bench alongside Bailey, Dave Taylor and Matt Srama, while Titans co-captains Greg Bird and Nate Myles will bring a tough edge to the backrow behind starting props Luke Douglas and Ryan James.

NRL ROUND 25, 2013






1.           Anthony Minichiello (c)

2.           Daniel Tupou

3.           Michael Jennings

4.           Shaun Kenny-Dowall

5.           Roger Tuivasa-Sheck

6.           James Maloney

7.           Mitchell Pearce

8.           Jared Waerea-Hargreaves

9.           Jake Friend

10.         Sam Moa

11.         Mitchell Aubusson

12.         Sonny Bill Williams

13.         Frank-Paul Nu'uausala


14.         Daniel Mortimer

15.         Aidan Guerra

16.         Isaac Liu

17.         Dylan Napa

Coach: Trent Robinson


2.           Kevin Gordon

20.         Steve Michaels

3.           Brad Takairangi

19.         Jordan Atkins

5.           Anthony Don

6.           Aidan Sezer

7.           Albert Kelly

8.           Luke Douglas

9.           Beau Falloon

10.         Ryan James

11.         Greg Bird (c)

12.         Ben Ridge

13.         Nate Myles (c)


4.           Jamie Dowling

14.         Dave Taylor

15.         Luke Bailey

17.         Matt Srama

Coach: John Cartwright