2023 NRL Preview Round 18: Broncos Vs Dolphins

Check out the match preview and prediction for the round 18 clash between the Broncos and The Dolphins.



Brisbane Broncos Vs Dolphins
Venue: The Gabba, Brisbane
Date: Sunday October 2, 7:35pm


Broncos: 1. Reece Walsh 2. Corey Oates 3. Kotoni Staggs 4. Herbie Farnworth 5. Selwyn Cobbo 6. Ezra Mam 7. Adam Reynolds 8. Keenan Palasia 9. Billy Walters 10. Payne Haas 11. Brendan Piakura 12. Xavier Willison 13. Patrick Carrigan 14. Tyson Smoothy 15. Corey Jensen 16. Kobe Hetherington 17. Martin Taupau 18. Jesse Arthars 19. Deine Mariner 20. Jock Madden 21. Tristan Sailor 22. Logan Bayliss-Brow

Dolphins: 1. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow 2. Jamayne Isaako 3. Euan Aitken 4. Valynce Te Whare 5. Tesi Niu 6. Isaiya Katoa 7. Sean O’Sullivan 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Jeremy Marshall-King 10. Herman Ese’ese 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Kenny Bromwich 13. Ray Stone 14. Josh Kerr 15. Mark Nicholls 16. Connelly Lemuelu 17. Kodi Nikorima 18. Max Plath 19. Harrison Graham 20. Poasa Faamausili 21. Brayden Mcgrady 22. Kurt Donoghoe

Referee: Peter Gough

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The Broncos will face up against their new-found rivals, the Dolphins, for the second time. The last time these two teams met, the Broncos came home in a hotly contested game at Suncorp Stadium. This weekend, they will host the Dolphins at the Gabba, the stadium’s first rugby league game since 1968. It remains to be seen how either side handles an entirely unfamiliar pitch.

The Broncos lost in an upset against the Titans last week. For a team that has put together highlight reels of attack throughout the season, there wasn’t much of it to be seen in that game. Coach Kevin Walters was rightfully disgusted with the team’s performance post-game, insisting that what was dished up wasn’t what they’re about. One should expect a much-improved performance, especially in a derby. Reece Walsh has been named but may yet miss this match pending his judiciary hearing. Should he be suspended, Tristan Sailor likely takes his spot. Furthermore, gun forwards Thomas Flegler and Jordan Riki are both out, which brings in Keenan Palasia and Xavier Willison.

If the Broncos were poor last week, The Dolphins were dreadful. In a day to forget, they hosted the Eels and conceded 42 points in the first half alone. This was on the back of a 58-18 point thrashing against the Sea Eagles in round 15. There are many thoughts that the bubble may have burst for The Dolphins, who played on emotion and effort admirably but may be running out of gas. If there’s any positive to come from last week, it’s that they were able to stem the tide and win the second half at 16-6. There are a few team changes, such as Tesi Niu returning to the wing and Sean O’Sullivan being officially named at 7 (he played last week as a late call-up), however, the big news is the return of Jeremy Marshall-King, who has been one of The Dolphins star players this season.

On form, one would think the Broncos win. However, with a few key forwards out, The Dolphins have an opportunity to win the middle. Marshall-King will get them moving forward, while the likes of the Bromwich brothers and Felise Kaufusi will take it to a slightly weakened forward pack. That said, the Broncos backline is packed with electric talent and should it fire, the Dolphins have shown in recent weeks that their defence has plenty of question marks over it. All eyes will be on Walsh’s judiciary hearing, as his inclusion would be a huge boost to the Broncos, and his suspension a massive loss.


Broncos 1, Dolphins 0


Broncos by 8

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