Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs vs Gold Coast Titans: Five things we learned

The Bulldogs season has sunken to a new low in Mbye's goodbye in front of the Belmore faithful, the Titans cruising to victory.

  1. 1 Ryan James deservedly wins blues jersey

    A try, 3 tackle breaks, 126 metres gained and 51 tackles made by the Titans captain and front rower has catapulted him into the box seat to debut for the Blues next Sunday. Touted as a future Origin blue early in his career, much was made of his maturity for such a young man. 

    His performances in 2016 were herculean amassing 11 tries in one season and dominating opposition packs. Endured a much quieter season last year however with the rise in form of Jarrod Wallace, Jai Arrow and Kevin Proctor alongside him James' game has gone to a new level this year. 

    Is the type of no nonsense forward that can own the Origin arena for years to come and his performance for the Titans yesterday was typical of what league fans have come to expect from the front row forward. 

  2. 2 Bulldogs have no attacking leaders

    Moses Mbye is being starved of possession and is off now anyway and Matt Frawley is probably a fill in first grader. Jeremy Marshall-King is still young and Michael Lichaa only ever performs when his contract is about to run out. The Bulldogs have no inspirational leader within their spine and possibly Mbye leaving is a blessing in disguise with Hopoate going back to fullback, his support play was immense when previously playing in the number one jersey. 

    Yesterday towards the end of the match, David Klemmer took out his frustration at his teams performance in trying a chip and chase kick of his own. Before this match I believed the Cowboys to be the worst attacking team in the competition at the moment however the Dogs would give them a run for their money. 

    It's a shame for a season that loomed as a rebuild and promised so much more after a proud round one performance against the Storm in which they were in the contest for 60 of the 80 minutes. Their forwards are aiming up and present go forward for their spine, however their inexperience is costing them dearly.

  3. 3 Bulldogs have no fear factor

    Once one of the NRL's most feared grounds the Bulldogs have not enjoyed much success at this ground upon returning recent years. A last gasp win last year against the Knights restored some pride playing at their spiritual home ground but the Bulldogs do not present the same imposing figure they once did.

    Their fear factor is gone even with Klemmer in their side forward packs aren't intimidated when they come up against the Bulldogs and they have completely lost their mojo.

    Gone are the days of an imposing pack consisting of Mark O'Meley and Willie Mason, or the days of Barba terrorising opposition defences. There is not a single player within their side that an opposition would look at, and that player strikes fear into the opposition.

  4. 4 Titans finally on an upward trajectory

    The Titans now possess an imposing forward pack that is committed to the Titans and that can match the best the NRL has to offer. Their halves are certainly more settled with the inclusion of AJ Brimson of late, the Titans are no longer signing fill in players, or players that can do a job but ultimately won't bring them closer to Grand Final glory. 

    Dropping Bryce Cartwright has been the correct decision and has showed the new no-nonsense direction of Garth Brennan that shows the Titans are not settling for mediocrity anymore. 

    In Ash Taylor they do possess a star of the future and who yesterday showcased many of his brilliant traits they now need another quality players in their spine with an again Michael Gordon and Nathan Peats lacking punch from dummy half to take the Titans up another few levels.

  5. 5 Belmore no longer a successful ground for the Bulldogs

    Since 2015 the Bulldogs have won two from six at Belmore Sports Ground inclusive of a last-gasp victory against the rebuilding Knights last year. Yesterday they did not for one second look likely of achieving victory with the Titans pulling them to shreds and being afforded far too much space through the middle.

    They take on the Raiders in Round 17 at the same ground on a Saturday night, however they will have to be much improved to attune for their poor record over recent years at the ground.

    Once a heralded fortress the club is in dire straits and no matter which way you look at it, their season and direction as a club doesn't look like it's going to get better any time soon.

    What did you takeaway from the Titan's big win over the Bulldogs at Belmore? Let us know in the comments below.

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