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Junior Titans shine on big stage

The next generation of Titans took to the field on Cbus Super Stadium at the Titans most recent home games against the Roosters and Sea Eagles.

The Titans JTS (Junior Titans System) players in the under 17 and under 16 development squads played as curtain raisers to the NRL matches.

It is all a part of the development of the Titans future stars and a chance to pull on the colours of the club they hope to one day play first grade for themselves.

Both teams played against Northern Rivers representative sides, further strengthening the bond between the Titans and their Northern New South Wales neighbours who are responsible for the likes of Anthony Don and Brian Kelly.

Although the matches are less about the scoreline, the impressive way that the Titans JTS under 17s dominated the Northern Rivers left plenty for Titans fans to be excited about for the future.

JTS U17 v Northern Rivers

16 year old Dom Sandow from Cherbourg, and Titans affiliate school Marsden, impressed many with his display at fullback, while Palm Beach Currumbin halfback Bailey McConnell is also a player to watch for the future after having a hand in a number of tries across the afternoon.

Titans Elite Player Development Manager Jamie McCormack said the hitout was just reward for the development players.

"To get to play at Cbus Super Stadium and wear Titans colours is a big thrill for our guys," McCormack said. 

"It was not about the scoreline today, but a good chance to reward our players and give them a taste of what is possible in the future with the club."

In the under 16s, who played prior to the Manly Sea Eagles v Titans match, it was a much tighter affair - ending in a draw.

JTS U16 v Northern Rivers

Again McCormack stressed it was less about the result.

"A number of these players are new to our systems, so the game was a great exhibition for us and the Northern Rivers," McCormack said.

"A lot of these players are still quite young and will have a lot of physical and football development still to come within our systems.

"What we saw from our players is really exciting for our future and we look forward to seeing these kids developing over the coming years and hopefully become NRL players."

In the under 16s it was two 15 year-olds who impressed.

Cooper Bai, son of NRL legend Marcus, playing lock and Sam Stephenson who is a young and upcoming centre stood out amongst the JTS players.

For both sets of JTS squads they now head back to focus on their school and club programs and the Titans will work with a number of them over the off-season as they build toward  their own goals of an NRL career.

The under 16s will also play in the Anthony Laffranchi Cup against the Wests Tigers in September.