Broncos vs Panthers: Tough Test in Grand Final Rematch Against Reigning Premiers

The Brisbane Broncos are gearing up for a crucial clash against the Penrith Panthers in a grand final rematch this Friday, July 5. As the 10th-placed Broncos struggle with a string of losses and injury woes, they face a formidable challenge against the reigning premiers. Broncos vs Panthers kick off  8:00 p.m. at Suncorp Stadium.

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Recent loss adds to Broncos’ woes

The Broncos enter this match on the back of a 32-16 defeat to the Warriors at Go Media Stadium despite a valiant effort from an undermanned Brisbane side.

The team, already missing five regular starters due to Origin, injuries, and suspensions, suffered another setback when Jack Gosiewski left the field with a broken arm in the opening minutes.

Broncos vs Panthers

Brisbane receives a timely boost with the return of State of Origin stars Reece Walsh, Payne Haas, and Patrick Carrigan.

However, the team’s forward pack remains depleted due to injuries and suspensions. Props Ben Te Kura and Fletcher Baker are sidelined with foot and knee injuries respectively, while second-rowers Jordan Riki, Jaiyden Hunt, and Jack Gosiewski are also unavailable.

Coach Kevin Walters faces a selection dilemma with only seven middle and edge forwards available from the top-30 squad. The Broncos will field all available forwards, including Corey Jensen, Kobe Hetherington, Brendan Piakura, Xavier Willison, and Martin Taupau.

The Panthers, also coming off a disappointing loss to the Cowboys, welcome back their own Origin contingent. Dylan Edwards, Brian To’o, Jarome Luai, and Liam Martin return to the lineup, strengthening the team for this important fixture.

Recent history favours the Panthers, who have won seven of their last eight encounters with the Broncos. Brisbane’s last victory against Penrith at Suncorp Stadium dates back to 2019, adding another layer of challenge for the home team.

Kevin Walters remains optimistic

Despite the recent setbacks, coach Kevin Walters maintains a positive outlook on the Broncos’ finals prospects. “If you have a good look at the table, there are a few teams like us behind the leaders and all in the race,” Walters states. 

“I expect us to get ourselves together sooner rather than later with some really strong performances leading into the finals.”

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The match against Penrith marks the beginning of a crucial period for the Broncos. With upcoming games against St George Illawarra and Newcastle, Brisbane need to secure six wins from their last nine games to keep their finals hopes alive.

Published 02-July-2024

Broncos vs Sharks: Brisbane Gunning for Vital Win Against Second-Placed Sharks

In a pivotal match for their finals hopes, the Brisbane Broncos host the second-placed Cronulla Sharks on Saturday night, June 8. Electric five-eighth Ezra Mam will play his 50th NRL game as part of a near full-strength Broncos squad for this heavyweight encounter. Broncos vs Sharks kickoff 7:35 p.m. at Suncorp Stadium.

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Brisbane slip up against Titans

The Broncos come into this clash looking to bounce back from a narrow 34-36 loss to the Titans last round. Despite leading 24-12 in the 37th minute, Brisbane were unable to hold off the Titans’ fightback in front of a sellout 42,221 crowd at Suncorp. Mam, Walsh and Haas were among the standouts for the home side.

Origins return to boost Broncos

After being named for State of Origin duties, Reece Walsh, Pat Carrigan, Selwyn Cobbo and Payne Haas are all expected to back up for Brisbane provided they get cleared on Thursday afternoon. Their availability would provide a major boost to the home side.

Centre Kotoni Staggs also returns from a rib injury to bolster Brisbane’s line-up. His inclusion sees Josiah Karapani drop back to the reserves.

Meanwhile, the Sharks have opted to rest star Blues halfback Nicho Hynes this weekend. Daniel Atkinson and Braydon Trindall will combine in the halves, while Cameron McInnes is set to back up from his Origin debut.

Ezra Mam’s 50th

For Mam, the match marks a significant milestone as the 21-year-old Broncos academy graduate chalks up his 50th top grade appearance for the club.

Mam re-committed to earlier this year by penning a five-year contract extension through 2029.

Broncos vs Sharks

Although the Sharks (9-3) are three spots ahead of the fifth-placed Broncos (7-5), Brisbane has won nine of their last 11 clashes against the Cronulla outfit and five of seven at Suncorp this season. In addition, Cronulla’s defence has given up 106 points over their last three games, a weakness that Brisbane should be eager to exploit.

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A win for the Broncos will be crucial in tightening their grip on a top eight berth.

Published 05-June-2024

Broncos vs Sea Eagles: NRL Magic Round Set to Electrify Suncorp Stadium

The 2024 NRL Magic Round roars into action Friday, May 17, with a double-header featuring pivotal clashes that could shape the season for both sides involved. Raiders vs Bulldogs kicks off 6:00 p.m., followed by Broncos vs Sea Eagles two hours later at Suncorp Stadium.

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Raiders vs Bulldogs

The Bulldogs go into the contest full of confidence after beating the Titans, Roosters, Knights and Wests Tigers this year. Under the guidance of Stephen Crichton, the Canterbury outfit has shown remarkable improvement. But their resolve will be put to the test against Ricky Stuart’s no-nonsense Raiders.

Coming off a hard-fought win over Manly and a well-timed bye, Canberra will be refreshed and ready to continue their Magic Round dominance. In recent years, the Raiders have twice beaten the Bulldogs (2021 and 2023) and the Sharks (2022) in this event.

Broncos vs Sea Eagles

Heading into the main event, the Broncos are riding high after a 30-14 thumping of the Eels on Friday night. They are eager to build on this momentum in their return to Brisbane, where they have claimed three out of four contests against Manly during Magic Round, including a resounding triumph last year.

Coach Kevin Walters is hopeful of welcoming back Jock Madden from a pectoral injury that has kept him out since round eight, further strengthening the Broncos’ lineup.

The Sea Eagles, reeling from the loss of star fullback Tom Trbojevic, return to Suncorp Stadium for the second consecutive week.

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With the NRL Magic Round at Suncorp Stadium, fans are in for a festival of football like no other. Sixteen teams descend upon Queensland’s home of rugby league for an action-packed weekend of pivotal match-ups.

Published 14-May-2024

Broncos vs Roosters: Brisbane Boosted by Cobbo and Mam Returns for Vegas Rematch

The Brisbane Broncos receive a significant boost for Friday night’s blockbuster clash against the Sydney Roosters, with Ezra Mam and Selwyn Cobbo returning from injury to slot into the starting line-up. Broncos vs Roosters kicks off 8:00 p.m. at Suncorp Stadium.

The club’s six-game winning streak at home will be on the line as they seek redemption against the side that defeated them in the historic Vegas opener.

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Brisbane reinforcements

Cobbo’s comeback from a shoulder issue sees him reclaim the centre position, pushing Jesse Arthars back to the wing and omitting Corey Oates from the 17-man squad. Meanwhile, Mam’s recovery from a finger injury allows him to slot back into the pivotal number six jersey, replacing Jock Madden.

Winning rhythm

The Broncos enter the contest brimming with confidence after their 34-10 thumping of the Wests Tigers last weekend. Captain Adam Reynolds displayed a masterclass in playmaking, while the forward pack led by Pat Carrigan, Payne Haas, and Kobe Hetherington laid the platform.

Despite the Tigers’ sin-binning and sustained pressure, Brisbane’s resolve was unwavering. Their efforts were rewarded with two tries on both sides of the break, including Reece Walsh’s long-range effort after a pinpoint Reynolds kick.

Broncos vs Roosters, Vegas rematch

The Broncos have made Suncorp Stadium a formidable fortress, winning their last six games at the venue. However, they faced a stern test against the Roosters in the season’s curtain-raiser in Las Vegas, going down 20-10 in a clash mired with controversy.

While emotions could run high given the racial abuse incident in the previous game, Reynolds insists the Broncos have moved past it. “It’s another game for us,” he said. “We have moved past it and addressed it as a club. I’m sure [the Roosters] have too. It is another opportunity to play our brand of football and get better.”

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As the home fans rally behind their side, the stage is set for an enthralling encounter, with the Broncos eager to maintain their winning ways and avenge their opening loss to the Roosters.

Published 30-April-2024

Broncos vs Raiders: Unchanged for Canberra Grind, Stars to Return Next Week

The Brisbane Broncos will field an unchanged lineup for Saturday’s Round 7 clash against the Canberra Raiders. Jock Madden, Fletcher Baker, Corey Oates, and Jaiyden Hunt retain their starting spots after stellar performances in last week’s win over Redcliffe. Broncos vs Raiders kickoff 5:35 p.m. at Suncorp Stadium.

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Broncos take the Battle

The Broncos had to dig deep against their Queensland rivals, overcoming a sloppy first half to prevail 28-14 over the Dolphins in front of a packed Suncorp. The Broncos were simply too strong, led by monumental efforts from Pat Carrigan (46 tackles, 207 metres) and Selwyn Cobbo.

Brace for a Broncos vs Raiders grindfest

Prop Corey Jensen says the Broncos are prepared for a physical battle against the Raiders (4-2, third in the league). “They’re a side that plays the long game, they don’t mind getting into a grind.” Jensen stated.

“They love getting down and dirty with teams and that’s something we’re going to have to be ready for.”

Jensen also praised the impact of Broncos (3-3, 10th) young forwards Xavier Willison and Ben Te Kura off the bench. “He’s [Willison] an awesome prospect, same with Benny Te Kura. The sky’s the limit for both those guys with their willingness to learn and get better.”

ANZAC round up next

Ahead of next week’s ANZAC round, coach Kevin Walters confirms a quartet of stars will return from injury for the Round 8 match against Wests Tigers.

While not ready this week, prop Payne Haas (knee), winger Deine Mariner (back), captain Adam Reynolds (hamstring), and second-rower Brendan Piakura (ankle) are all expected to play against the Tigers.

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The Broncos, gunning for a sixth-straight home win, will need to be at their physical best against Canberra’s grind game. They need to hold on to the home crowd’s support before reinforcements arrive for the ANZAC round.

Published 17-April-2024

Broncos vs Dolphins: Contract Wars Add Spice to the Battle of Brisbane

The Battle of Brisbane will have an extra layer of intrigue this week, as the Broncos and Dolphins clash with salary cap pressures adding extra spice to the cross-town rivalry. Broncos vs Dolphins kickoff 6:00 p.m. on Friday, April 12 at Suncorp Stadium.

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Broncos boosted by Walsh return, face tough contract decisions

The Broncos have received a major boost with the return of star fullback Reece Walsh from a facial fracture. He joins Jordan Riki (ankle) in making a timely comeback for the home side.

Their returns are a major boost for the team, especially since captain Adam Reynolds (hamstring) and Payne Haas are still sidelined.

The wealth of talent in the Brisbane side and a looming salary cap crunch could mean tough decisions lie ahead.

The Dolphins have several million dollars in cap space, giving them the financial firepower to target top Broncos players who may not fit under the tightening Brisbane budget. This could reignite contract wars between the two clubs, with names like Selwyn Cobbo and Kotoni Staggs potentially in the Dolphins’ sights.

Two former Broncos, Herbie Farnworth and Tom Flegler, have already joined the Dolphins for this year. However, a late injury setback has forced Flegler to withdraw from the match against his former side.

Staggs doubles down on “our house” claim

Kotoni Staggs
Photo Credit: Brisbane Broncos

Broncos centre Kotoni Staggs has already fired the first shot, doubling down on his emotional “this is our house” declaration after scoring the match-winning try against the Dolphins last season.

“It wasn’t really planned,” Staggs said. “Once I scored that try it just came to me. It was the first game we ever played against the Dolphins and I just wanted to let them know who owned Suncorp.”

Broncos vs Dolphins, the battle for Suncorp

The Dolphins share Suncorp Stadium as a home ground with the Broncos, but Staggs made it clear he sees the venue as belonging to the Brisbane club. This is sure to add further spice to Friday night’s encounter.

On the field, the Broncos (2-3) will be looking to bounce back from a narrow loss to the Storm. Meanwhile, the Dolphins (3-1) are flying high at the top of the ladder after three wins out of four.

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The Broncos have won both their matches at Suncorp this season. The Dolphins have won one and lost one away from home. This Battle of Brisbane will be the first test of who can assert their dominance over The Cauldron in 2024.

Published 11-April-2024

Broncos vs Cowboys: Brisbane Look to Spoil Undefeated Queensland Rivals

The Broncos are eager to shake off their early-season woes as they prepare to face the North Queensland Cowboys in the highly anticipated Queensland Derby on Friday, March 29. Broncos vs Cowboys kick off 5:00 p.m. at Suncorp Stadium.

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Struggles in grand finals rematch

Broncos vs Panthers
Photo Credit: Facebook/Brisbane Broncos

The Broncos are coming off a disappointing 34-12 loss to the Penrith Panthers. The team’s woes were compounded by the absence of Captain Adam Reynolds and forward leader Payne Haas. An early injury to fullback Reece Walsh, also forced him off the field after a head clash with Taylan May.

Their last game also served as a rematch of last year’s Grand Final. The Broncos experienced heartbreak as the Panthers pulled off an all-time comeback, overturning a 12-24 deficit to win 26-24 and secure their third straight premiership.

Broncos vs Cowboys, the Queensland derby

Brisbane Broncos Round 3 ladder
It is still early days, but at the moment a large gap separates the Queensland derby sides. Photo Credit: Brisbane Broncos

While the Broncos (1-2) are licking their wounds, the North Queensland Cowboys (3-0) have been in scintillating form. The Cowboys remain the only undefeated team in the league through three rounds.

The Broncos will aim to get their season back on track and claim bragging rights in the Queensland Derby.

For the Broncos to emerge victorious, they will need to tighten their defensive efforts and minimise missed tackles, which proved costly against the Panthers.

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The stage is set for an enthralling encounter between two fierce Queensland rivals, with the Broncos looking to bounce back and the Cowboys aiming to maintain their unblemished start to the season.

Published 25-March-2024

Broncos vs Rabbitohs: Revamped Lineups After Vegas Disappointments

The Brisbane Broncos and the South Sydney Rabbitohs, both coming off disappointing Round 1 losses in Vegas, are set to make changes to their respective lineups as they prepare to face each other in Round 2. Broncos vs Rabbitohs kickoff at 7:00 p.m. AEST at Suncorp Stadium on March 14.

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Broncos vs Rabbitohs lineup changes

For the Broncos, Brendan Piakura, who was ruled out of their season opener against the Roosters after failing his Head Injury Assessment, has been named in the back row. Corey Jensen receives a promotion to the starting lineup, bumping Martin Taupau to the bench.

Captain Adam Reynolds will also suit up despite a knee issue sustained in Round 1.

The Rabbitohs, on the other hand, will be without Jai Arrow, who sustained a shoulder injury. Starting in his place will be Tallis Duncan. Shaquille Mitchell will also make his first appearance of the 2024 season, coming onto the bench to replace Jacob Host.

Recent matchups

Selywn Cobbo
Selywn Cobbo scored 20 tries in 24 games for Brisbane in 2023. Photo Credit: Brisbane Broncos

The Broncos have the recent edge, winning three of the last four clashes against the Rabbitohs. Centre Kotoni Staggs continues to dominate the Bunnies, scoring six tries in seven games.

On the other hand, the Rabbitohs have won their last four games at Suncorp. The Broncos will aim to shatter this streak, leaning on winger Selwyn Cobbo’s impressive record of 20 tries in his last 18 appearances at the venue.

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With both teams carrying the disappointment of Round 1 losses in Las Vegas, the match promises to be a closely contested affair.

Published 13-March-2024

Broncos Lose to Bogey Team Storm on Final Day, Face Rematch in Qualifying Final

The Brisbane Broncos lost their final regular season game 32-22 to the Melbourne Storm to miss out on the minor premiership. The Storm remain a bogey team for the Broncos, who will now face them again in the preliminary final.

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Inspired Melbourne comeback

In what turned out to be a glimpse of the qualifying final, the Storm had to come from behind on three separate occasions at Lang Park. In the end, Melbourne had too much quality even though both sides rested most of their stars.

Grant Anderson scored a double before halftime to make it 14-12 in favour of Melbourne.

Broncos second-half rally falls short

Pereira’s second try briefly restored Brisbane’s lead early in the second half. But penalties and late tries from Papenhuyzen, Reimis Smith and Faalogo’s second try proved too much to overcome.

Brisbane battled but made too many errors, completing just 72% of their sets to Melbourne’s 82%. Critical errors at key moments ultimately cost the Broncos.

Regular season ends with familiar foe waiting in the wings

The loss means Brisbane have now incredibly lost 14 straight matches to Melbourne dating back to 2016. And the Broncos’ finals campaign begins with the worst possible matchup, as they face the Storm once again in the preliminary final at Lang Park on Friday, September 8.

Coach Kevin Walters praised his team’s effort despite the defeat: “Effort was great, just not quite so smart on a few plays and we just weren’t good enough tonight.”

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But to make the finals, Brisbane will need to produce something special to end their long losing streak against Melbourne. After so many defeats, can the Broncos finally exorcise their bogey team this Friday?

Published 4 September 2023