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Titans secure finals spot in inaugural NRLW season

The Gold Coast Titans will play in the NRLW finals in their inaugural season in the competition after defeating the Newcastle Knights to lock up their spot in semi's.

The Knights gave the Titans a test and the Gold Coast side trailed for the majority of the game, before a late burst saw them finish the regular season with a 14 points to 10 win.

Newcastle's Paige Parker opened the scoring and that was the only points in a messy first half.

Match Highlights: Titans v Knights NRLW

Shaniah Power looked the most likely for the Titans, with the Gold Coast centre continuing her strong recent form with a powerful first half.

Power was strong with ball in hand, but also had an impact in defence as she controlled the Titans left side.

Poor ball control and ill-discipline cost the Titans in the first half, with errors often coming as the Gold Coast side worked the ball out of their own half.

Jessika Elliston was strong off the bench and led the go-forward through the middle.

The Titans had two late chances to convert in the first half, but both attacking raids were halted by error.  The first saw Grace Griffin try a cut-out pass to Karina Brown that hit the turf, while Elliston went close to the line but wasn't able to hang on to the ball.

Newcastle had the first opportunity of the second half with prop Phoebe Desmond charging down field in open space.  April Ngatupuna showed great determination, with the Titans forward able to grab a hold of her front row counterpart to stop her just inches short of the line.  The Ngatupuna desperation also forced an error from Desmond and the Titans survived.

Destiny Brill took matters into her own hands, grubbering for herself and creating an attacking chance.  Brill's kick bounced off a Knight and landed with a player in an off-side position to give the Titans a chance to open their account.

In what was their best attack of the match to that point, Kimi Breayley-Nati rolled a grubber kick looking for Hailee-Jay Maunsell but the ball rolled touch in goal.

The Knights counter punched, with Katelyn Vaha'akolo splitting the Titans defence and running 60 metres downfield.  40-year-old veteran Steph Hancock somehow got back in cover and made the tackle forcing the error.

Cobie-Jane Morgan had an immediate impact off the bench, with a great last tackle option forcing a repeat set.

The Titans finally opened their account in the 52 minute, with captain Britt Breayley-Nati kicking close to the line and Jessika Elliston scoring.  Breayley-Nati's kick ricocheted off a Knight and landed in the hands of Elliston who scored beside the posts with Brianna Clark converting to level the scores at six-all.

Elliston scores great try

Five minutes later, the Titans hit the front through Hailee-Jay Maunsell.  The Titans spread the ball left, with Kimi Breayley-Nati quickly batting the ball on to create the overlap for Maunsell to score in the corner.  Zara Canfield was unable to convert and the Titans led 10-6.

Vaha'akolo hit back for the Knights, scoring in the corner to level the scores with eight minutes remaining.  The unsuccessful conversion meant that scores were locked at 10.

Strong runs by Ngatupuna and Power put the Titans back into an attacking position.  Karina Brown sealed the victory for the Titans, crossing in the corner with two minutes left to guarantee the Gold Coast a win and a spot in the playoffs.

Karina Brown try secures Titans win

The win moves the Titans to third on the competition ladder, with other results to determine the fixtures for the first week of finals.

Acknowledgement of Country

Gold Coast Titans proudly acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we are situated, the Kombumerri families of the Yugambeh Language Region. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging, and recognise their continuing connections to the lands, waters and their extended communities throughout South East Queensland.