They were the pace setting NRL team only a few short weeks ago, but the new kids on the block have hit a brick ball in a bad way; with several key Gold Coast Titans players now out for extended periods.
With Luke Bailey already consigned to the sidelines for virtually the rest of the 2008 NRL season, you can now throw prominent halfback Scott Prince into that mix after the creative half broke his arm in State of Origin Game 3.
X-rays confirmed today that Prince had broken the bone is his forearm and plans immediately began for the repair and recovery of the untimely injury.
Prince went into surgery at Brisbane’s Mater private hospital, having a plate inserted into his arm.
He is expected to be out for up to 12 weeks.
There are just 10 regular season rounds left in the 2008 NRL season.
It ensures Prince’s return will depend on how far the Titans advance into the NRL finals.
Prince earned his unwanted tag after enduring horrific leg breaks, a knee reconstruction and the tragic loss of his father.
He emerged from each hard luck story throughout his career with a brave smile on his face – and today was no different when he touched down in Brisbane.
“I’ve had a fair run up `til now,” Prince said.
“I look back now and I’ve had close to four seasons straight and that’s the nature of the game I guess.
“One positive to take out of it I guess is you would rather do something like this in such a game.”
Prince set up the first try for flying winger Israel Folau with a pinpoint crossfield kick before breaking his arm in a 15th minute tackle.
“It was a bittersweet night for myself, disappointed about the injury but very proud and honoured to be a Queenslander today,” Prince said.
While it took X-Rays to reveal the full extent of the damage, Prince admitted he knew he was in big trouble.
“There was a bit of movement in there when I made the tackle and when I pushed myself off the ground I could feel it crackle and grind away there so I knew something serious was done,” he said.
“It wasn’t too flash.”
At least Prince had one of rugby league’s greatest players for a shoulder to cry on in Sydney.
TV cameras in the Maroons dressing sheds showed Immortal Wally Lewis – technically working for Channel Nine – tending to Prince, even helping the doctor with the half-back’s dressing.
“He helped us out immensely. Wally was tremendous and I was very thankful for his help in the dressing room and he even helped put my shoes on,” Prince said.
“Steve Walters, the manager, said it was the first time he’d seen ‘The King’ do that.”
Prince wasn’t giving up on the Titans despite being added to a worrying injury list that also includes the other co-captain Luke Bailey (ankle).
Bailey also faces up to three months recovery.
“My initial thoughts were that I couldn’t be out there doing my best for the (Queensland) team and then later on at the end of the game I started to think about the Titans and how we’re travelling there,” Prince said.
“(But) With me going down and Bails (Luke Bailey) and (prop Aaron) Cannings (out) it gives another guy an opportunity (at the Titans).
“We missed Bails at the start of the year but won four or five straight, there’s no reason why they can’t do it now.”
Titans coach John Cartwright tried to put on a brave front.
“It’s a big blow to us and a bigger blow to Princey,” he said.
“I am sure he would have loved to have finished the game on a high with his mates.
“You’ve got to have played Origin to know what it feels like and to get busted like that in the first 15 minutes would be very disappointing for him.
“Take your general out of any side and it’s going to hurt. But life goes on.”