Gold Coast Titans coach John Cartwright.
Gold Coast Titans coach John Cartwright.

Injured Bailey racing the clock

SCANS have cleared Gold Coast co-captain Luke Bailey of serious knee damage, but Titans coach John Cartwright admits the inspirational prop is racing the clock to be fit for Monday night's NRL clash at Penrith.

The ladder-leading Titans yesterday still named Bailey in an unchanged 17 for the showdown with the Panthers.

Cartwright hoped the long build-up to the Monday night game would give Bailey enough time to recover - but offered no guarantees.

“He's got a bit of a jarred knee I suppose you could call it - a bit of bone bruising,” he said.

“(But) considering it could have been cartilage and ligament damage, we'd rather have it as it is.”

Cartwright said the trip to Penrith was up there with playing at Melbourne and Townsville.

He should know - he played 184 first grade games for Penrith from 1985-1996.

However, the Titans have begun to forge a new reputation as road warriors following recent back-to-back away wins against the Storm and the Cowboys.

“It's nothing that we haven't put ourselves through so far this year,” Cartwright said. “We've been fortunate we've had a long week from Friday (win over Canberra) to Monday because after that we get some really short turnarounds.

“So we're just using this week to try and freshen up and go down there with a fit side because they're going to be tough.

“It's a side that no matter whether you're in front or behind they're never out of the game, they just keep coming at you.

“They leave nothing in the tank and throw balls left right and centre so we're going to have to be on our game.”

Meanwhile, in troubled Parramatta, centre Krisnan Inu has paid the price for the Eels' poor start to the season, being dumped for Friday night's NRL match against Brisbane.

Inu, who played Test football with New Zealand last year, was the only player dumped by coach Daniel Anderson following the club's embarrassing 48-18 loss to the Bulldogs on Sunday.

He has been replaced by Taulima Tautai. Eric Grothe is out with a back injury while Nathan Hindmarsh (wrist) returns.

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