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2022 NRL Round 21, Roosters 34 Broncos 16 – Report

Shannon Meyer reviews a comfortable win for the Roosters that keeps them inside the top eight.

MATCHDAY RESULTS

SCOREBOARD

Roosters 34
Tries: Nat Butcher 2 (7, 43), Paul Momirovski (4), Angus Crichton (15), Luke Keary (67), Joseph Suaalii (76)
Goals: Sam Walker 5 (6, 9, 17, 45, 68)

Broncos 16
Tries: Corey Oates 2 (20, 60) Luke Capewell (72)
Goals: Adam Reynolds 2 (61, 73)

MATCH REPORT

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The Roosters further cemented their top eight status with a 34-16 win over the Broncos in slippery conditions at the SCG on Thursday night.

It wasn’t the greatest start for Brisbane, who were already without suspended star Patrick Carrigan, as they lost Tom Flegler to a HIA within the first five minutes. Compounding that, the Roosters were in front with the very next set through Paul Momirovski – courtesy of a brilliant casual tap-on from James Tedesco. The conversion gave the Roosters a 6-0 lead.

The Roosters doubled their lead not long after as Nat Butcher chased a perfect chip kick close to the line from Sam Walker and just got his fingertips on the ball before the dead ball line. Walker converted for 12-0.

Try number three came in the 15th minute as Angus Crichton crashed through Adam Reynolds close to the line, running off a sharp Luke Keary pass. Alarm bells were ringing for the Broncos as they were 18-0 before the 20th minute.

Brisbane closed the gap not long after through Corey Oates sliding in to score in the corner, courtesy of lead up work from Ezra Mam and Kurt Capewell. He undid his good work by dropping the kick-off, and – the try aside – he had a poor first half with his hands. Reynolds also missed the conversion and the score was 18-4.

The Roosters were on top for most of the first half, but some poor mistakes deep in Broncos territory in the last 20 minutes of the half were keeping Brisbane in the game, but the Broncos weren’t showing enough either to take advantage. The half-time score was 18-4.

No long into the second half and the Roosters extended their lead with Butcher scoring his second try of the night: the Roosters forward powering through close to the line and dragging Ezra Mam with him. Luke Keary provided the try assist with a short pass and Walker converted for a 24-4 lead.

The Broncos took advantage of some more errors from the Roosters to close the gap with 20 minutes to go; it was Oates – who had a very mixed night – who scored his second try of the night, albeit from a final Mam pass that looked at least two metres forward. Thankfully for the Broncos, a forward pass is one thing The Bunker can’t check. Reynolds nailed the sideline conversion to make it 24-10.

The momentum of the game was starting to shift, with Broncos getting a lot of 50-50 calls, and the Roosters continuing to make mistakes. But that opportunity was slammed shut by Keary with 13 minutes to go as he sliced and dummied his way through the Broncos’ defence to score a try. Walker’s conversion made it 30-10, and sealed the game.

There was still time for another Broncos try however, and Kurt Capewell jinked and bounced off the Roosters defenders close to the line to score, with the assistance of a good offload and tap-on from Mam leading into the try. Reynolds’ conversion reduced the gap to a not-impossible-but-unlikely 30-16.

There was also time for another Roosters try when Joseph Suaalii took advantage of some fine cut-out passing from Keary and Tedesco to score in the corner. Walker missed the conversion and 34-16 was the final score.

Despite the comfortable win on the scoreboard, the Roosters had large parts of the game where they were lacklustre in attack and made poor errors. With a bit more discipline and fewer errors it could have been a 50+ win for them tonight. For Brisbane it was a second underwhelming match in a row, and dare you say, a mini-form slump. It’s at the wrong time too, as they slide down the top eight towards some form teams rather than pushing on for the top four.

PLAYER OF THE YEAR POINTS

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3 pts – Luke Keary (Roosters), 2 pts – James Tedesco (Roosters), 1 pt – Joseph Suaalii (Roosters)

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