This is probably one we’re best to forget. But sadly, that’s against the very nature of a match recap.
So, what good, bad, and unknown can we make from Sunday’s game?
Kotoni Staggs may not have been allowed to start the game (we’ll get to that nightmare), but he sure made an impact once he was on. The young centre led the team for running metres, ahead of fellow bench-starter Ofahengaue.
Speaking of, Joe was definitely unlucky to not get a run for the Maroons. His tough and aggressive approach to his running and defence were one of the few wins the Broncos could take away.
The score-line read 6-26, but you’d never know the Broncos had a handful of strong chances to score. In the opening minutes, Oates went within millimetres of scoring a terrific try in the corner. And to open the second half, Boyd was denied what looked like a certain try.
An artist’s impression of how close the Broncos came to having 3 tries (at least).
Long story short, ‘6’ doesn’t do justice to how smooth the Broncos attack is looking – particularly with Milford at the helm.
It’s a cruel game sometimes. Little moments like Oates’ missed opportunity can really take their toll on the team’s mentality. And it certainly doesn’t help when a serious case can be made that his (and Boyd’s) attempts were both worthy tries.
Oates dropped it, but did his hand not regather the ball before the grounding? And as for Boyd’s, was Tuivasa-Sheck (who’d given up on the play) really going to slide and cover the gap?
But regardless of whether they were bad calls or bad plays, the Broncos missed out on some valuable points.
Luke and Kata both played brilliantly, but a lack of cohesion in defence made points a little too easy to find for the Warriors. Staggs starting off the field certainly didn’t help the right-edge defence, but at NRL level, you need to be prepared for a strong centre to run a good line.
In case you missed it, this is the story.
Kotoni Staggs was outside of the 30-player roster the Broncos submitted to the NRL at the beginning of the season. But during the Origin series (when players were unavailable for their club), the Broncos were granted permission to start Staggs in the centre.
But now Origin’s over, Staggs has been banned by the NRL from starting in 2018.
An artist’s impression of the rulebook explaining the Kotoni Staggs incident.
Bennett’s made it clear he’s not a fan of the ruling – electing to simply place his starting centre on the bench. But in the moments before he took to the field, the Warriors had already tramped Jayden Su’A, who was filling in for Staggs.
It really can be a cruel game sometimes. But it does beg the question, will the Broncos risk the start of each game (and waste an interchange) by playing Staggs on the bench? Or will Opacic earn his place back in the pecking order?
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