Some would say that the Broncos should have won the game or that the game was one of the grittiest, most determined contests they have seen but regardless of all that, it was the Melbourne Storm who came away with the goods.
The Storm’s late win sees them go to the top of the ladder with three straight wins to start the season. Although the Broncos put in a spirited effort, a try with five minutes to go for Storm wingerJosh Addo-Carr brought about the heartbreak for the Broncos.
Although they now move to 1-2, it was their gutsiness and their resilience that will have Broncos fans hopeful that they can eventually turn performances like that into wins.
It was Melbourne who started the stronger of the two sides as they looked to link up and open the scoring but in the opening exchanges, they looked rather rusty.
The Broncos capitalised as a result off a Cronk pass that went awry and opened the scoring against the run of play through James Roberts. More entertaining than the try, though, was the foot-race between Roberts and Addo-Carr – what a spectacle that was!
The Storm then regained further ascendancy and eventually scored a try of their own after some nifty work by Cam Smith at dummy half, leading to a try for Canadian international, Ryley Jacks.
Trailing just 8-6 at the break, the Broncos would have been pleased with that scoreline given the monumental amount of possession the Storm had in their territory. They used that as their fuel.
The Broncos retook the lead after a great solo try by Ben Hunt as he sliced and weaved his way through the defenders to score. Kahu converted successfully and the Broncos went up 12-8.
The rest is history as despite their best efforts, the Broncos could not hold the Storm out and it was the Melbourne side left cheering.
The downside to the Melbourne win was a broken jaw for five-eighth Cameron Munster after a heavy collision.
“He’s a young guy and tough kid so they will do what they’ve got to do tomorrow and go get a plate put in it and hopefully he will be back as soon as possible,” said Storm coach Craig Bellamy post-game.
Despite falling to 1-2, Broncos coach Wayne Bennett had nothing but praise for his side’s toughness and courage.
“It’s a lot easier to keep your spirits up that way than to get well beaten,” Bennett said.
“We played both grand finalists from last year and played the Cowboys who finished fourth. [We] know we’re in the competition right now.
“These guys know if they get their execution right, they can be a real chance of doing something before the season’s out.”
Player of the Game:
3. Jordan McLean
2. Andrew McCullough
- Ryley Jacks
Melbourne Storm 14 (Ryley Jacks, Josh Addo-Carr tries; Cameron Smith 3 goals) defeated Brisbane Broncos 12 (James Roberts, Ben Hunt tries; Jordan Kahu 2 goals) at AAMI Park. Half-time: Storm 8-6.