The much anticipated return of Greg Bird, a week early from a knee injury, never eventuated as the Brisbane Broncos scored three tries to two to beat the boys from the Sutherland Shire 18-12 at Suncorp Stadium this evening.
Looking to lift their intensity after a getting a stern talking to from coach Wayne Bennett during the week and bolstered by the return of Justin Hodges from a six-week suspension, the Broncos held off a late charge from the Sharks to keep their top four hopes alive.
Greg Eastwood, coming off the bench for the Broncos, was the spark the team required after a relatively lacklustre start to the game.
Michael Ennis got the scoring underway in the 6th minute with a penalty goal after Brett Kimmorley was penalized for laying on the tackled player.
But it took almost half an hour after that for either side to cross the chalk, with a deftly placed chip kick from Eastwood to the wing of Denan Kemp, putting the competition