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Hayne to start at fullback for Titans

NZN 23/08/2016 Ed Jackson

Gold Coast fans will get to see Jarryd Hayne at fullback for the first time in Saturday's crucial NRL clash with Penrith.

Titans coach Neil Henry named the ex-NFL player in the No.1 jersey for the first time since he joined the club earlier this month.

In his three previous appearances for the Titans, Hayne has been used as a five-eighth but the return of Ash Taylor after a week's rest has forced the shuffle.

Tyrone Roberts will play at five-eighth with Taylor at halfback for the match against the seventh-placed Panthers.

A win for the eighth-placed Titans at Cbus Super Stadium on Saturday will guarantee them a first finals appearance since 2010.

Incumbent fullback David Mead is the unlucky man to make way, a decision Henry says has been hard on the 27-year-old.

Henry is also playing down expectations on Hayne now he's back in the position where he had made his name for Parramatta, NSW and Australia.

"The expectation around him going back to fullback and being able to click and add more to our team might be a bit unfair," he said.

"It's a difficult position; he has to cover a lot more ground ... it's one of those things where we'll see but there might be some rotation during the game."

Mead has been named as 18th man as the Titans continue to prepare for one of the biggest games in the club's history.

"It's a good challenge for us," Henry said.

"They're a point ahead of us so it's vital for them as well.

"We know how significant it is for us in the context of the season but our last few games have all been pretty big."

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