Sport Rugby League Warriors back in town with Titans thumping

Warriors back in town with Titans thumping

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The Warriors have breathed life back into their NRL finals hopes with a 42-0 thrashing of the Gold Coast Titans in Auckland.

The Warriors bounced back from two successive defeats to score seven tries, with fullback Sam Tomkins getting a double, and climb to ninth on the ladder – just outside the top eight on for and against.

If they won by 50 or more they would’ve taken eighth spot off the Broncos with one round remaining but the Titans held them out for the last half hour.

The win on a cold, damp afternoon at Mount Smart Stadium was the Warriors’ largest over Gold Coast.

It also continued their dominance in recent seasons over the Titans, whom they have now beaten in their last eight meetings going back to 2011.

The Titans were already out of finals reckoning after losing their last five matches before this weekend and their forwards options were depleted by injury.

They showed enterprise with plenty of offloads, but struggled to get enough possession and also made some costly errors.

Despite having the wind at their backs in the opening spell, the visitors turned around down 30-0.

The Warriors continued to tick the score over early in the second spell, Tomkins getting his second when he plucked in a Shaun Johnson bomb.

Johnson then dotted down after an individual 40-metre effort and then landed the conversion on the way to a seven-from-seven effort off the tee.

The contest blew up briefly in the 55th minute with a scuffle between Gold Coast skipper Greg Bird and Warriors winger Ngani Laumape, and both were put on report.

The incident appeared to spur on the Titans, who began to have more chances on attack, while frustrating the Warriors in defence.

In front of 13,540 fans, the Warriors made a flying start to the match.

They were gifted field position for their first two tries, Titans fullback William Zillman twice knocking on from kicks.

The home side profited by putting Ben Henry and Dominique Peyroux over in the first six minutes.

When Nathan Friend found a big hole around the ruck for a dummy-half’s try, the Warriors were continuing to run at more than a point a minute.

Another Titans knock-on from a kick reception, this time by substitute Steve Michaels, was punished with Tomkins dotting down.

Tomkins’ great short ball then sent Konrad Hurrell over for the Warriors’ fifth try.