Battered Broncos Overcome Panthers

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Updated: September 16, 2017

A brilliant and determined defensive display has seen the NRMA Insurance Brisbane Broncos home in a physical finals encounter on Friday night, defeating the Penrith Panthers 13-6 to keep their premiership prospects alive. 

Having copped the ire of critics throughout the week following their Qualifying Final loss to the Sydney Roosters, an iron-clad maroon and gold unit returned to Suncorp Stadium in the low-scoring affair to counter Penrith’s resurgent attack repeatedly.

With skipper Darius Boyd still on the sidelines the aggressive confrontation saw Corey Oates, Sam Thaiday and Jai Arrow leave the field for concussion treatment as the battered side now braces for a do-or-die showdown with the Melbourne Storm.

Trailing 6-0 at the break Penrith would be relying on their track record of fast finishes to guide them to an upset win. 

However it was Brisbane that would emerge from the sheds with intensity. 

Anthony Milford looked to force the initiative early in the second stanza, putting a probing kick on second behind the line only to be taken out by Corey Harawira-Naera. 

While the ensuing penalty goal attempt was unsuccessful Brisbane would not be denied for long.

A burst of speed from utility Kodi Nikorima unleashed fearsome speedster James Roberts who sliced passed his opposite number to double the Broncos advantage.

Penrith weren’t going to let their season die wondering after a Dean Whare run gave the ‘mountain men’ a chance. 

The field position finally proved fruitful as tireless prop Regan Campbell-Gillard barged through to get his side within a converted try.

However an error attempting to defuse a pin-point bomb handed Brisbane the chance to extend the lead as Jordan Kahu slotted a field goal to go seven points ahead. 

The Panthers tried valiantly to get back into the contest however it wasn’t to be as the courageous Broncos progressed another week. 

Earlier Brisbane’s pace off the line in attack and defence set the foundation for the gutsy victory. 

After dominating the opening exchanges through the middle, a beautiful – almost casual – cut-out pass from Ben Hunt sent towering winger Corey Oates on a long-range charge for the line to kickstart proceedings in the seventh minute.

Brisbane continued to stamp their authority on the match and the weight of possession had the Panthers back-peddling. 

A tired penalty from James Tamou for holding down the man resulted in an extra two points as Kahu extended the margin to six. 

The game threatened to open up after a decisive run from Alex Glenn looked to expose Penrith again however the physicality of the contest would soon prove pivotal and slam the breaks on the home side’s assault. 

Panthers captain and former Bronco Peter Wallace was forced from the field for a concussion test after copping the full force of a Hunt clearance kick. 

However that was just the start of the carnage. 

While Wallace would later return, Oates became the victim of a massive collision with teammate Milford, the try-scoring machine blindsided and sent for a HIA with the Panthers in attacking territory. 

The Broncos appeared undaunted by the reshuffle as David Mead settled seamlessly onto the left-hand flank while Tautau Moga showed impressive strength and intelligence in defence to shut down several attacking raids in the face of surging Penrith momentum. 

As the visitor’s continued to search for answers in the shadows of halftime, five-eighth Tyrone May was the next enlisted into the casualty ward after succumbing to a leg injury as another dangerous foray came unstuck heading into the interval.

NRMA Insurance Brisbane Broncos 13 (C Oates, James Roberts tries; J Kahu 2 goals; J Kahu field goal) 
Penrith Panthers 6 (R Campbell-Gillard tries; N Cleary goals) 

Source: http://www.broncos.com.au/news/2017/09/15/battered_broncos_ove.html





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