TE MAIRE MARTIN FUTURE SUPERSTAR
Coach Anthony Griffin denied on game eve that Te Maire Martin would be named in the Panthers line-up. Pre-game speculation was on the mark as the talented Junior Kiwi stepped out for this first NRL appearance.
The signs are there that TMM will be an exceptional player.
He showed few nerves against last years Grand Finalists, a huge game to come in and play as your debut game. Martin made some good ground in one of his first touches.
The script read perfectly for the twenty year old. Receiving an offload from Bryce Cartwright to score in the corner to level scores at twenty-two all with eleven minutes to go. Then being involved in the winning play as Soward switched back to Martin for the field goal.
I have been wanting to see Te Maire Martin play in the NRL. Tonight Panther fans weren’t left disappointed. A wonderful debut.
It will be an unhappy Brisbane heading back to Red Hill after having the blowtorch applied in the second half. A polished first half effort saw them lead at one stage 22-6. Anthony Milford in total control of the game scoring a double and setting up another.
What happened in the second half was very un-Brisbane. Penrith came out a different side in the second half and Brisbane struggled to maintain any pressure. Silly errors and the Broncos goal line defence, something they pride their effort on, went missing.
You would think Brisbane will bounce back and learn a valuable lesson about closing out a match after surrendering.
They will have to be on their game against JT and the Cowboys next Friday.
ENTERTAINING MATCH PUNCTUATED WITH OFFLOADS
What made the game so entertaining was the second phase play generated by the offload.
Both sides have some handy ball playing forwards with Bryce Cartwright and Corey Parker in particular. It’s no surprise the count was quite high with Penrith offloading on twenty-three occasions, the Broncos thirteen.
This is good news for Panther fans as this part of their game was instrumental on their way to falling one game short of the 2014 Grand Final. They managed to run around the Broncos pack and create opportunities.
Brisbane will work hard during the week to improve their defence to better wrap up the ball.
The influence of Anthony Milford at the Broncos will see them play finals footy again this September.
He sliced the Panthers defence to score the first after the worse possible start for the home side where Reagan Campbell-Gillard lost the ball in the opening exchanges.
A lovely inside ball to Darius Boyd sent alarm bells through the home side’s defence to extend the lead to ten. Then stepping back on the inside four minutes from the break capped off a brilliant forty minute display for the Broncos half.
Pure class and as Andrew Voss said on Fox Sports tonight, unlucky not to have won the Clive Churchill Medal on the losing side of last year’s Grand Final.
JT has got some competition for the Dally M Medal this year. A changing of the guard is in progress.
IN THE SHEDS
Jack Reed copped some friendly fire making a tackle with Anthony Milford in the last fifteen minutes of the game and went off with a head knock.
No players were placed on report.
Penrith Panthers 23
Tries: Peta Hiku, Bryce Cartwright, Jeremy Latimore, Te Maire Martin
Goals: Jamie Soward 3
Field Goal: Te Maire Martin
Brisbane Broncos 22
Try: Anthony Milford 2, Darius Boyd, Ben Hunt
Goal: Corey Parker 3