NRL 2019: Blake Green calls for much-improved Warriors against Titans

Watching Warriors teammates scattered like tenpins in successive NRL defeats has prompted Blake Green to demand they show a little more spine.

Veteran halfback Green said a repeat of the turnstile defence on show against Wests Tigers and Manly would result in another galling loss, when the Warriors face Gold Coast in Auckland on Friday.

The Titans are the competition's only winless team, but are set to mount a thorough examination of the Warriors, through the likely return from injury of halves Ash Taylor and Tyrone Roberts.

The pair have been named to start behind a pack that held its own against South Sydney and has looked more robust of late than the Warriors.

The 32-year-old Green couldn't explain why their go-forward was so effective in the opening-round rout of the Bulldogs, but had become almost non-existent.

Last week's 46-12 drubbing from the Sea Eagles in Christchurch was their biggest loss on New Zealand soil in seven years.

Green was stunned they'd missed 41 tackles against his former club.

"They seemed really desperate for a performance and we couldn't handle it," Green said.

"Even when we did make tackles, we had three or four blokes in there and they were still getting up faster than us. We were just scattered all over the place.

"It's something we need to fix up real quick."

Green's assessment straight after the loss was that young halves partner Adam Keighran shouldn't take any blame despite a quiet game.

Coach Stephen Kearney begged to differ, introducing another rookie youngster in Chanel Harris-Tavita to the problematic five-eighth role.

Green played down expectations on the 20-year-old, instead turning the blowtorch on others.

"We've just been poor physically two weeks in a row," said Green. "We haven't been prepared to get down and dirty and they just rolled down the field too easily."

Titans coach Garth Brennan remains confident Taylor and Roberts will play their first game together this season.

The pair were comfortable in a light session on Tuesday, but will need to pull up well on match morning, after Thursday's more strenuous hit-out, if they are to start.

"All signs are that they should be right," Brennan said. "Both of them are skipping around the place and jumping out of their skin to play, and hopefully that transfers onto the field."

STATS THAT MATTER

* The Titans have scored the least points of any team this season (26),  but the Warriors have conceded the most (86).

* The Warriors have won 16 of their 24 NRL games against the Titans, their best winning percentage (66 percent) against any current club.

* Gold Coast could lose their first four games of the NRL season, something they've never done previously.

 

AAP

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