Three tries to winger Alex Johnston has lifted the South Sydney Rabbitohs to a 46-28 win over the Gold Coast Titans at Robina Stadium.

After a shaky start defensively, the Rabbitohs leaked first points as Tanah Boyd busted the line open from close range and put a short ball onto the chest of Iszac Fa'asuamaleaui to cross in the seventh minute.

The poor start was compounded with a controversial penalty from the next set, with Chris Randall then going on to score out of dummy half to push the lead out to 12-0 after 11 minutes.


South Sydney finally got a chance to have some quality ball, and took full advantage as a rampaging Keaon Koloamatangi carried four defenders over the line to get his side on the board.

Momentum was well and truly on their side as they marched down the field from the kick-off, with a lovely backline movement seeing the ball spread through the hands on the left-hand side and ending with Johnston scoring in the corner.

Slick hands send Johnston in

The Rabbitohs made full use of an early penalty to start the second half, with Blake Taaffe taking advantage of the rushing defence to put a perfect grubber in for Campbell Graham to bring scores back to level.

Just minutes later they had their first lead of the game, courtesy of quick hands from Cody Walker and an acrobatic finish from Johnston to bring up the 13th hat-trick of his illustrious career.

Graham pounces on a Taaffe kick

The points continued to flow in the 21st minute as the Titans found space on their left to put Alofiana Khan-Pereira into a hold and to push the lead back out to 18-10.

Just as time was starting to wind down in the first half, the left edge came to the fore again, with Isaiah Tass getting an offload away with three defenders on him to put Johnston over for his second and cut the margin back to two.

An error just before half-time proved costly, as Jojo Fifita crossed with the last plat of the half to push the lead to 22-16.

The easiest try Johnston will ever score

A piece of eyes-up brilliance from Damien Cook saw him scoot from dummy half near the line, catching defenders off-guard and finding a surging Walker, who got past a couple to stretch the score to 32-22 in the 57th minute.

After a string of forward passes from both sides, a penalty from Taaffe gave the Rabbitohs a 12-point buffer heading into the final nine minutes.

Cook sees the space and Walker finishes it

A failed short kick-off gave South Sydney good territory to start their set, and they finished it off with a try to seal the match, as they spread the ball wide on last tackle to give Richie Kennar a try in his first game of the season.

The party was well and truly on after front rower Hame Sele used his size and strength to extend the margin to 46-22 with just minutes to play.

Rabbitohs on the rampage as Kennar scores

Match Snapshot

Hame Sele gets another for the Bunnies

Play of the Game

With momentum on South Sydney's side, quick hands from Cody Walker found Alex Johnston on the run, where the winger raced for the corner with an incredible diving effort to give the Rabbitohs their first lead of the night after 50 minutes.

How about the hands from Walker!

What's Next?

The Rabbitohs face off with the St George Illawarra Dragons at Kogarah next weekend in their final outing before their first bye of the season. It is shaping up as a must-win clash to go into the week off with a crucial two points.

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