'IT IS WHAT IT IS': Titans cult hero and former Grafton Ghosts flyer Anthony Don has been dropped from the side for their Round 1 clash with Canberra Raiders.
'IT IS WHAT IT IS': Titans cult hero and former Grafton Ghosts flyer Anthony Don has been dropped from the side for their Round 1 clash with Canberra Raiders. DAVE HUNT/AAP PHOTOS

League star to fight his way back

RUGBY LEAGUE: A defiant Anthony Don will take a back-to-basics approach to winning an NRL recall, admitting his omission from the Titans' Round 1 side is a scenario he had been preparing for.

A fan favourite on the Gold Coast since making his debut as a 25-year-old in 2013, Don has been squeezed out of the team to face Canberra on Sunday, with Brenko Lee and Phillip Sami on the wings.

The Titans' equal-leading tryscorer now appears set to line up for Burleigh against Ipswich in Round 2 of the Intrust Super Cup tomorrow, but his demotion came as no shock after being named on the bench for Gold Coast's final trial against the Broncos earlier this month.

"We've had the whole pre-season together so it's not hard to work out there's a lot of outside backs in contention and there's not that many outside backs' spots,” the 110-game veteran, and former Grafton Ghosts leading try-scorer, said.

"We've been (training) all summer and one of us (outside backs) has always had to miss out on the team or whatever so it's always been a concern and it's kind of driven the whole squad to train hard.

"It's always been in the back of my mind but it is what it is, so I've just got to try and play good footy.

"My focus (for Burleigh) is good, solid carries and quick play of the balls and defensively to make the one-on-one tackles and get the defensive reads right. Just keep it simple.”

Despite his disappointment, the 31-year-old said the club's improved depth was "a massive positive”.

"There's a lot of competition for spots right across the whole squad, but definitely in the backs so a lot of good players are going to miss out,” he said.

"There's not enough spots for everyone in the team so people are just going to have to cop it on the chin, work hard and try and get back in the team. I'll be doing my best to cement my spot.”



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