SYDNEY - South Sydney hooker Issac Luke booted a pressure penalty goal with two minutes left on the clock to hand the Rabbitohs a heart stopping 24-23 win over an injury-hit Gold Coast in a National Rugby League match at ANZ Stadium last night.
Luke, who also scored two first half tries for Souths, lined up the kick from 23m out and to the left of the uprights after Titans winger Jordan Atkins was penalised in the 77th minute for taking too long to get off Beau Champion.
The Coast led 12-10 at halftime and 22-16 midway through the second half but had to withstand a fresher Rabbitohs who squared it up at 22-22 with 10 minutes to go.
Brilliant Titans halfback Scott prince looked to have clinched victory with a 72nd minute field goal to make it 23-22 before Luke stepped up to seal the Rabbitohs' third win of 2008.
For Souths, Luke bagged a double, John Sutton and David Fa'alogo grabbed one try each, while Chris Sandow kicked one goal and Luke three in front of 9,827 fans.
The Gold Coast's points came from two tries to NSW Origin forward Anthony Laffranchi, one each to Prince and Atkins while Prince booted three goals and his one-pointer.
The Titans led 12-10 at halftime after both sides had scored two tries each before the break.
But the Rabbitohs went ahead 16-12 four minutes after the break when Sutton emerged from a tangle of decoy runners and defenders to touch down, video referee Russell Smith having only one look before deciding there was no obstruction.
The Coast squared it up at 16-16 in the 51st minute when clever balls from Daniel Conn and Preston Campbell resulted in Atkins diving over in the corner.
They reclaimed the lead six minutes later when Laffranchi scored his second for the night barging over from dummy-half, Smith ruling the ball had found the grass for 22-16.
With the momentum going their way, the Titans came close again in the 61st through winger Ben Jeffery but a last gasp tackle from Fetuli Talanoa forced him into touch.
Fa'alogo crashed over in the 69th minute to set up the thrilling finish.
Gold Coast co-captain Luke Bailey's NSW State of Origin hopes were ended when the front-rower suffered an ankle injury and left the field in the second half as the Titans went down like flies, leaving no bench players for the game's final 15 minutes.
As well as Bailey, Aaron Cannings injured a leg, Daniel Conn a shoulder and Preston Campbell got a poke in the eye.