Phillip Sami has already caught Kevin Walters' eye. (AAP Image/Dave Hunt)
Phillip Sami has already caught Kevin Walters' eye. (AAP Image/Dave Hunt)

Maroons hopefuls battle for Titans spot

MAROONS coach Kevin Walters believes Titans speedsters Phillip Sami and Brenko Lee are potential Queensland Origin players.

But one of the Gold Coast's dynamic duo is set to start the season in reserve grade instead of vying for NFL-convert Valentine Holmes' Maroons jersey..

Titans coach Garth Brennan is presiding over a selection headache which could have ramifications for the Queensland Origin team.

Walters is such a fan of Sami and Lee that he invited them to Queensland's Emerging Origin camp on the Sunshine Coast earlier this month.

But with Anthony Don seemingly assured of a wing spot, the two are locked in a battle for the Gold Coast's left-wing berth and Titans centre Brian Kelly says it has been a tight tussle.

 

"The young fellas, Phillip and Brenko, have been ripping in," he said.

"Off the field as well they are doing the extras and fitness. I'm looking forward to seeing how they go."

Brenko Lee will be fighting for that wing spot. (AAP Image/Dave Hunt)
Brenko Lee will be fighting for that wing spot. (AAP Image/Dave Hunt)

Kelly, 22, is the frontrunner to start at left centre after returning to the Gold Coast from Manly. On the other side of the field at centre will be NSW Origin utility Tyrone Peachey.

Kelly and Peachey will give the Titans some spark on the edges which the club has lacked in the past.

"I met him when we went to PNG with the Prime Minister's XIII," Kelly said of Peachey.

"He is a good bloke and loves a muck around.

"He is unpredictable. I love how he floats everywhere across the field and can pop up anywhere.

"He is a good little thing to have in your side and will be tough to defend against."

It's not just spark the Titans are looking for.

Brian Kelly back in Titans colours. Picture: NIGEL HALLETT
Brian Kelly back in Titans colours. Picture: NIGEL HALLETT

After finishing 14th and leaking 582 points last season, the Titans are determined to turn their defence around.

"There's a big plan this year on our defence," Kelly said.

"We're getting our combinations and nailing those. We need to get on the same page.

"From day dot in November that's been a main focus of the pre-season.

"We're looking pretty good at the moment and need to keep working on things."

Kelly is hoping to be named in the Indigenous All Stars team for the first contest against the New Zealand Maori side on February 15 in Melbourne.

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