Crichton hat-trick inspires Rabbitohs in Burgess absence

Angus Crichton was the inspirational figure for South Sydney Rabbitohs as they came from behind to beat Gold Coast Titans 36-20 in the absence of stand-in captain Sam Burgess.

With Burgess ruled out of the match due to a glute injury, Crichton took matters into his own hands by scoring a hat-trick to help the Bunnies overcome a slow start and move two points clear of their opponents in 13th.

The Titans were 14-0 up after 20 minutes at ANZ Stadium thanks to scores from debutant Pat Politoni - making his first NRL appearance since 2015 - and Kevin Proctor, but a brilliant solo effort from Crichton was followed by Alex Johnston diving over in the corner to reduce the deficit

Joe Greenwood somehow touched down despite pressure from five Rabbitohs defenders and Ash Taylor's conversion gave Gold Coast a 10-point lead at the break, but they would not register any more before the final buzzer.

Adam Reynolds converted tries from Cody Walker and Crichton to put Souths ahead before Bryson Goodwin crossed following an excellent, mazy run.

The Bunnies did not let up and after Johnston got his double, Crichton dived over for his seventh try in as many games in the 79th minute to end a three-match winless streak that boosts their hopes of a late charge for the top eight.

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