Photos courtesy of NRL
The Battle for Brisbane round two lacked none of the intensity of the Dolphins’ and Broncos’ first encounter earlier this season, but it was again the Broncos’ night.
They emerged from the tight tussle, at The Gabba, 24-16 winners thanks to a Selwyn Cobbo hat-trick. See the photo gallery at the end of this story
The Dolphins started the game better than they had in the past three rounds and were unlucky to have a Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow try disallowed the first five minutes.
But by half-time, they had just 39 per cent possession and a completion rate of 64 per cent. In comparison, the Broncos had 61 per cent possession and completion rate of 87 per cent. The Dolphins had also given away seven penalties.
Felise Kaufusi was forced to leave the field in the 16th minute for a HIA which was later ruled a game-ending category 2. Euan Aitken was sent on to replace him.
The Broncos went into the sheds 14-6 ahead.
The Dolphins came out in the second half firing with tries to Valynce Te Whare (50th minute) and Jeremy Marshall-King (63rd minute).
They hit the front 16-14 after Marshall-King’s try but two more tries to the Broncos’ Selwyn Cobbo sealed the win for his side.
Dolphins Head Coach Wayne Bennett said he was pleased with his side’s effort, particularly in the second half.
“It was pretty gusty of them to stay in the game actually … the way we played the last couple of weeks,” he said.
“There’s plenty going against us, but you make your own luck and we’re probably not making much of it.”
Captain Jesse Bromwich said the effort that had been missing for the past month was there tonight.
“We’re working hard as a group. We just need to keep working hard,” he said.
“Tonight, was a step in the right direction, obviously not a win but a step in the right direction.”
In a blow for the Dolphins, Jeremy Marshall-King reinjured his shoulder tonight.
“He’s a wonderful player and we’ve probably got him at 75 per cent tonight but we might have to go the rest of the season without him. I’m not sure,” Bennett said.
He said he was happy with Tabuai-Fidow’s performance in the centres and with Kodi Nikorima as fullback.
“It was our best option on the night and I think we did a pretty fair job of both those positions,” Bennett said.
Photo gallery (click through)
Photos courtesy of NRL
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