Titans call up Dom

DESERVED DEBUT: Dominique Peyroux will make his NRL debut for the Gold Coast Titans against Newcastle on Sunday afternoon.
DESERVED DEBUT: Dominique Peyroux will make his NRL debut for the Gold Coast Titans against Newcastle on Sunday afternoon. Scott Powick

DOMINIQUE Peyroux will make his NRL debut for the Gold Coast Titans on Sunday afternoon against Newcastle, rewarded after a patch of intimidating form for the Tweed Heads Seagulls.

Titans coach John Cartwright named 22-year-old Peyroux to travel south as a winger yesterday, in place of the injured Steve Michaels, who is suffering the effects of concussion.

“(Tweed) have been in the zone down there and Dom's been an important part of that. He's a very enthusiastic fellow and he's eaten up everything that's been thrown at him and has improved himself to a level where we think he's ready for a chance,” Cartwright said. “Stevie just had one too many knocks in the head so it's time to give him a rest. His health is the most important thing so we'll nurse him back but he'll play before the year is out.”

Peyroux, is set for a baptism of fire as he is likely to line up against arguably the best winger in the NRL at the moment, Akuila Uate.

His Seagulls coach Ben Anderson has no doubt the “big lump of a boy” has what it takes.

“It will be a tough one marking (Uate) but Dom will give him a good shot. He is good in defence, is big, strong and has pace,” Anderson said.

“I am over the moon for him. He has had a fantastic season to date for us and it is a well-deserved call-up. I can't fault his efforts this year and all the boys are wrapped for him. The club wishes him all the best.”

Peyroux, who represented Cook Islands at the 2009 Pacific Cup, was part of the club's National Youth Competition under-20 team in 2009 alongside the likes of Kevin Gordon and Jordan Rankin and has since been in the Titans' feeder system with Tweed Heads, where he has played right centre.

In other changes, Rankin returns to the NRL at fullback in place of Broncos-bound Luke Capewell, after spending the past two weeks in the under-20s, including last week's upset victory over the highly-rated North Queensland Cowboys under-20 outfit. The match marks a special milestone for forward Anthony Laffranchi, who will play his 200th NRL game in his final season with the club before finishing his career in the English Super League with St Helens.

The Titans scored a thrilling 38-36 victory over the Knights the last time the two clubs met in Newcastle and the other two matches there have been decided by less than five points.

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