Ryan James will skipper the Titans at the Auckland Nines.
Ryan James will skipper the Titans at the Auckland Nines. BRENDAN ESPOSITO

Titans to test combinations at Nines

RUGBY LEAGUE: The Titans are set to put some of their playmaking combinations to the test at this weekend's Nines, with Jarryd Hayne, Kane Elgey and Tyrone Roberts headed across the ditch.

Coach Neil Henry named a 19-man squad this morning, with the team to be led by Ryan James (pictured).

A number of NRL stars will be playing in the New Zealand tournament and Henry is keen to see how some of his combinations are forming.

The most crucial combination will be that of fullback Hayne and halves Elgey and Roberts. Roberts is fighting to maintain his place in the starting side for the season ahead, with Elgey and Ash Taylor favourites to claim the six and seven jerseys.

Henry said this morning that Taylor won't travel to Auckland as he's still on restricted training, giving Roberts the chance to put his case forward.

"It's a real battle for our halves,” Henry said.

"Jarryd is keen to get there,” he said.

"Kane, obviously no footy last year, so he's looking forward to getting back out there. He's really keen to just play some football.

"Tyrone has been one of our best trainers. He's in really good shape.”

Henry is also set to test out some 20s young guns, with Max King, Tyronne Roberts-Davis and Alexander Brimson all named to play.

The Titans will leave for New Zealand on Thursday.