NRL 2021: Gold Coast Titans, news, squad, signings, David Fifita, coach Justin Holbrook, history, finals, ladder


Saturday, June 6, 2020 marked a bleak milestone for the Gold Coast Titans.

It was the 364th day since the NRL club’s last win.

Granted, the enforced coronavirus shutdown exacerbated that statistic but 14 losses in a row is still a headline no sporting team wishes to be tied to.

They have played one finals game in the last decade. That’s the worst record of any team post-2010 — including the Knights who won three wooden spoons in a row during that period (the Titans themselves had two, in 2011 and 2019).

Round 1

Just eight months on from that drastic nadir, things are looking brighter than ever for the competition’s perennial whipping boy.

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Warriors confirm RTS release to NZ rugby


Roger Tuivasa-Sheck wants to deliver the Warriors their maiden NRL premiership as a parting gift before leaving to chase a deal with New Zealand rugby at the end of the season.

The 27-year-old Dally M winner has been released from the final year of his contract with the Warriors in 2022, though he is yet to sign a deal with any rugby club.

Tuivasa-Sheck will be the latest high-profile NRL player to switch to the 15-man code at the peak of his career, joining the likes of Sonny Bill Williams, Israel Folau and Suliasi Vunivalu.

On Saturday morning, Tuivasa-Sheck said he came to the decision a few months ago that the time was right to pursue a career in the sport he grew up playing.

“It’s always been there and it’s no secret … rugby is the sport I grew up playing,” he said.

“Rugby is where I started my junior footy and playing rugby right through. It’s always been there in the background.

“To do it now at a time like this and to have the club’s support, that’s why I chose to do it now.”

The timing would appear right with the Rugby World Cup approaching in 2023, but he said any suggestion he would walk into the All Blacks side is’ disrespectful’.

“I’ve been getting a lot of people saying ‘you’re going to the All Blacks’, but that’s a bit disrespectful to a brand like that, so my whole thing is just to go back and play rugby,” he said.

“You don’t just walk into a brand like the All Blacks, you’ve got to earn your way in.”

The Warriors skipper also refused to say which position he is hoping to play, although it’s likely he could start on the wing before developing a kicking game to move into fullback or even centre.

As for the Warriors and how the club goes about replacing their best player, the club has been working behind the scenes for a while.

CEO Cameron George said the decision didn’t come as a shock to the club and there had already been discussions on how to recruit a player to replace the star fullback.

However, the club was shocked by the news breaking in the media on Thursday, forcing Tuivasa-Sheck to hurriedly tell his teammates before the story was published.

“I wish I could have announced it properly and let them know first and in a better way, but the boys have been really good and really supportive and they’re keen to make it happen this year, and I’m all in with them,” he said.

“This club is really important to me and special to me.

“I’ve been wanting to do all I can for this club and I’m even more driven to try and make it happen this year and I know the team are too.”



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NRL 2021: Fox League showcase, season preview, programming line-up, Round 1, predictions


Tune in to the Fox League Showcase live on channel 502 from 1pm or stream live below

The countdown to the 2021 season is on and the Fox League commentary team is here to dissect all 16 clubs in a Season Showcase available to you live and free.

There’s just nine sleeps to go until Round 1 kicks off with a blockbuster clash between the two teams many believe will be there on grand final day, the Melbourne Storm and South Sydney Rabbitohs.

But who else will make up the top eight? And what teams are in for a rough year?

Round 1

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Tracey ready for No.1 spot at Sharks


Connor Tracey is looming as a shock contender to fill Cronulla’s No.1 NRL jersey after training at fullback in the pre-season.

Tracey has not played at the back since his early teens, but the play-making utility has impressed there alongside Will Kennedy this summer.

The Sharks will have an opening for at least the first eight rounds, with Shaun Johnson injured and Matt Moylan playing in the halves.

But Tracey want to make the role his long-term, with a gap likely to open up depending on Moylan’s future at the club.

“I have wanted to do it the past few years, but you have to get a full pre-season in if you want to switch positions,” Tracey told AAP.

“I came to Bomber (coach John Morris) before pre-season and he said he was already planning on putting me there in the pre-season.

“I really do see myself there in the future.

“It suits my abilities the best, probably better than five-eighth. I am really looking to get a career out of fullback.”

Tracey played 16 games last year, but the majority of those came as a utility off the bench.

He last played fullback 10 years ago as a 14-year-old before shifting to the halves when playing under-16s Harold Matthews Cup for Cronulla in 2012.

His chances to push for the spot are limited, with players who only played more than 12 NRL games last year restricted to just one trial match in 2021.

Tracey has however been regularly tested under the high ball at training, with the Sharks running opposed sessions each Friday during the pre-season.

Kennedy started at the back in 17 games last year, scoring just three tries but setting up 12.

However Tracey believed the faster gameplay in 2021 due to the expanded six-again rule would suit him at the back.

“The faster the game for me, the better,” Tracey said.

“I want them to speed it up as much as they can. Small guys it really suits and I am quite fit, so it works in my favour.”



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NRL 2021: Injuries, trial games, Harry Grant, Storm, Joseph Suaalii, Roosters, casualty ward, teams Round 1


Melbourne young gun Harry Grant will likely need scans on a knee injured during Saturday’s trial game against Newcastle in Albury.

Grant limped off the field during the game with a ligament injury in his knee and could miss the start of the NRL season.

“He’s done a medial so I doubt if he’s going to be ready for Round 1,” Storm coach Bellamy said post-match.

Watch Live & On-Demand coverage of NRL pre-season trial matches on Kayo. New to Kayo? Get your 14-day free trial now & start streaming instantly >

Round 1

“I’m not quite sure, it’s probably three or four weeks I’d think, medials usually are.



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St George Illawarra Dragons vs South Sydney Rabbitohs Tips, Odds and Betting – NRL Charity Shield 2021


Glen Willow Stadium will play host to Saturday”s
NRL game between St George Illawarra Dragons and
South Sydney Rabbitohs. The game kicks off at 6:30 pm with South Sydney Rabbitohs heading into the game as favourites with the bookmakers. Continue reading for our in-depth preview of the St George Illawarra Dragons vs.
South Sydney Rabbitohs
game and give you our free tips and bets.

When: Saturday February 27, 2021 at 6:30 pm

Where: Glen Willow Stadium

Bet 💰: Bet On This Match HERE

St George Illawarra Dragons vs South Sydney Rabbitohs Odds

St George Illawarra Dragons vs South Sydney Rabbitohs Preview

South Sydney Rabbitohs will be looking to continue their dominance on the NRL Charity Shield match when they take on the St George Illawarra Dragons on Saturday night.

The two teams will again meet at Glen Willow Stadium with the Rabbitohs highly fancied to win.

Not brave enough to back against them given their impressive winning record in this match over the years.

Souths to win.

St George Illawarra Dragons vs South Sydney Rabbitohs Tip



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NRL 2021: Lachlan Croker hamstring injury, hooker replacement, Manly Sea Eales, casualty ward, injuries, return dates


Manly’s hooking stocks have taken a major hit with utility Lachlan Croker reportedly set to miss the opening three rounds after suffering a hamstring injury.

Wide World of Sports reports the 24-year-old picked up the injury during training this week.

The club has not yet confirmed Croker’s injury, but he was not named to play Sunday’s trial match against the Wests Tigers.

It’s important to note that halves duo Daly Cherry-Evans and Kieran Foran were also not named in the squad — suggesting coach Des Hasler is resting his key men. However, Foxsports.com.au understands Croker as well as fellow utility Cade Cust both had hamstring concerns earlier this month.

Round 1

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2021 NRL Charity Shield Odds, Tips and Betting Preview – St George Illawarra Dragons vs South Sydney Rabbitohs


THE start of the 2021 NRL season is two weeks away and the traditional Charity Shield takes place at Glen Willow Oval in Mudgee on Saturday night with Souths $1.30 favourites at TAB against St George Illawarra ($3.50).

Since betting opened on Tuesday, the Rabbitohs have been immensely popular and shortened from their original price of $1.36 to $1.30.

As a result of the Rabbitohs’ betting popularity, the Dragons have drifted from $3.20 to $3.50.

Bets of $7000 at $1.36, $7000 at $1.33 and $8000 at $1.32 have been placed on Souths in the 48 hours of available betting to secure this year’s Charity Shield.

With 22 percent of support from TAB customers, the Rabbitohs ($6) are the best-backed team to win the 2021 NRL premiership.

At the other end of the spectrum, only North Queensland (least) and Cronulla (second-least) have received less backing than St George Illawarra ($51) to win this season’s NRL title.

TAB ODDS

2021 Charity Shield

Head To Head

$3.50     St George lllawarra          opened $3.20 on Tuesday

$1.30     Souths                                  opened $1.36 on Tuesday

Saturday 6:30pm AEDT at Glen Willow Oval in Mudgee

 

 

Normal Time Margin

$2.25     Souths to won by 13+

$2.90     Souths to win by 1-12

$4.50     St George Illawarra to win by 1-12

$9           St George Illawarra to win by 13+

$23         Draw

 

 

2021 NRL Premiership

$5           Penrith                                 $4.50 after 2020 Grand Final

$6           Souths                                  $6 after 2020 Grand Final; as much as $6.50 since

$6.50     Melbourne                         $7.50 after 2020 Grand Final

                Sydney Roosters              $6 after 2020 Grand Final; as short as $5.25 since

$11         Canberra                             $10 after 2020 Grand Final; as much as $12 since

$15         Gold Coast                          $19 after 2020 Grand Final

                Parramatta                         $13 after 2020 Grand Final

$21         Manly                                   $15 after 2020 Grand Final

$23         Newcastle                           $17 after 2020 Grand Final

$26         North Queensland           $21 after 2020 Grand Final

                NZ Warriors                        $23 after 2020 Grand Final; as short as $21 since

$29         Cronulla                               $23 after 2020 Grand Final

$41         Canterbury                         $67 after 2020 Grand Final

                Wests Tigers                       $29 after 2020 Grand Final

$51         Brisbane                              $51 after 2020 Grand Final

                St George Illawarra          $41 after 2020 Grand Final



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NRL 2021: trial teams, Dragons vs Rabbitohs, Charity Shield, Broncos, teams, trials, Raiders v Roosters, Sam Walker and Joseph Suaalii


South Sydney and St George-Illawarra fans will be treated to a full-strength contest when their sides meet in the Charity Shield on Saturday.

The Rabbitohs will play what is close to their first strength starting XIII in Mudgee, while the Dragons’ Origin stars are all named.

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Newcastle face the Storm on Saturday, with Phoenix Crossland being given a chance to partner Mitchell Pearce in the halves.

Round 1

Benji opens up on new Souths role

4:39

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Knights better fit than Bulldogs for Green


Blake Green’s backflip from an NRL deal at Canterbury to stay with Newcastle appeared to be a recruitment debacle for the Bulldogs but the five-eighth says he simply couldn’t do the job the Belmore club wanted him for.

Green signed with the Bulldogs for one year but just three days later suffered an ACL injury, which would effectively rule him out of the pre-season and early rounds.

A conversation followed with Trent Barrett that made it clear Green’s best option would be to stay at the Knights, if they would have him.

And 75 days later the backflip was announced, which Green describes as an easy fit for everyone.

“It was just unfortunate timing when I did my knee,” he told AAP.

“With Trent going to the club as a new coach, I’ve got a really good relationship with Baz, he needed someone to get his attack on in the pre-season and then start the year and get the club off to a good start.

“Obviously I couldn’t be that person anymore.

“It was an easy conversation to have.

“It was the best thing for both parties.

“Tt worked out really well and I’m happy here and grateful to be staying at Newcastle, and they’ve got someone to start the season off (at the Bulldogs).

“It was just an easy fit.”

Green laughs off any suggestion of hard feelings towards the Bulldogs but the contract confusion was just the cherry on top of a wild year for the former Warriors half.

His family only received all of their belongings from their Auckland home in November, having lived out of a suitcase for six months.

The 34-year-old started the season with the Warriors, moved his family to Australia temporarily, then found out in the media he was unwanted by the club beyond the end of 2020.

Green sought and was granted an immediate release to join the Knights, playing three games before suffering the ACL injury that will delay his 2021 season start, although he’s unsure until when.

“It’s almost been five months but once we get to that six month mark we’ll be able to do some testing and see where I’m at, but it’s been tracking along really well,” he said.

“The medical team at the club have been fantastic.

“The rehab program I’ve been put through has been really professional and I’ve ticked all the boxes so far, I haven’t had any hiccups.

“It’s hard to put a date on it though, the six month mark is when we’ll know more.”



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