Warriors batter Broncos in Auckland

The Warriors have turned in a superb first half rush to get past the Brisbane Broncos tonight at Mt Smart Stadium, with the home side 30-20 winners over the high-flying Broncos.

Opening the scoring was Warriors centre Ben Henry, set up by some smart running from halfback Shaun Johnson, before the Broncos hit back with two tries - despite one of them being a very dubious refs call on Jack Reed, who hadn't appeared to have grounded it but was awarded the try anyway.

From 10-6 the Broncos appeared to be winning the arm wrestle before the Warriors turned it all around at the 30-minute mark. Tries to Shaun Johnson and Elijah Taylor put the Warriors back in the lead before a huge effort from Jacob Lillyman saw him cross on halftime to send the Warriors in as unexpected 14-point leaders at halftime.

Outright second coming into the clash, the Broncos were hoping to rely on NSW halfback prospect Peter Wallace to push their claims for a seventh straight win, however a groin injury kept him out of the game from the half-hour mark.

It would be the Warriors who took full advantage ultimately, holding the Broncos out until the 50th minute before a Ben Te'o try surprised the home side. From there both sides tightened defensively and allowed ball control to lapse - tries to each side in the final ten minutes sealing a result that didn't seem in too much doubt despite the closeness of the scoreline during the second half.

There's a bit to work on for the Broncos ahead of their clash with Manly next Friday night at Suncorp, while the Warriors will look for back-to-back victories next week when they host the Roosters for just the second time in five rounds.

Match Details
New Zealand Warriors 30 defeated Brisbane Broncos 20
National Rugby League - Round 9 - Saturday May 5, 2012 5:30pm
Venue: Mt Smart Stadium
Referees: Ben Cummins and Jason Robinson
Video Referee: Paul Simpkins
Touch Judges: Ricky MacFarlane and Brenden Wood
Crowd: 19,012
Halftime: New Zealand Warriors 24 Brisbane Broncos 10

Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:
3 Points - Shaun Johnson (1 Try)
2 Points - Jacob Lillyman (1 Try)
1 Point - James Maloney (5 Conversions)

Tries: Feleti Mateo, Jacob Lillyman, Elijah Taylor, Shaun Johnson, Ben Henry
Field Goals: James Maloney (0/1)
Conversions: James Maloney (5/5)

Tries: Sam Thaiday, Alex Glenn, Ben Te'o, Jack Reed
Conversions: Corey Parker (2/4)

LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary The high-flying Broncos are in town to face the Warriors, who've had an indifferent season thus far following their 2011 Grand Final appearance. Brisbane will be shooting for their seventh straight win as they try to keep pace with competition leaders Melbourne, while the Warriors are looking to move up the ladder from 12th place.
Just one change for to the team lists for tonight - the Warriors welcome back Jacob Lillyman a week early from injury, with Pita Godinet the man left out of the side. Brisbane are as per program.
Warriors in their black home strip, the Broncos wearing their canary yellow away jerseys here at Mt Smart. Teams about to make their way onto the park...
Game on! Broncos kickoff, Warriors with the ball.
1 min: Strong first set from the Broncos, putting a bomb deep into Brisbane's territory. Hoffman fields it well, Broncos with it now.
2 min: BANG! Matulino puts a bellringer on Broncos & Maroons forward Ben Hannant. Huge hit.
3 min: Easy metres thus far for the Warriors, their final tackle option goes awry when Maloney's tackled mid-kick. A mad scramble takes place on the left edge before the Broncos are penalised for what appeared to be holding a player off the ball.
4 min: Brisbane up in the faces of the Warriors... they've forced an error - wait, no - the Broncos are the ones who've knocked it forward. Warriors scrum!
6 min: TRY
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by Ben Henry. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.
The pressure finally sees the Broncos crack, some Shaun Johnson brilliance sees Ben Henry score untouched in the corner. The sideline conversion from Maloney is arrow-straight.
New Zealand Warriors 6-0
8 min: Warriors penalised... but Wallace doesn't find touch. Warriors in possession inside their own half.
11 min: BANG again - this time Vatuvei in attack fends Sam Thaiday off and leaves the Broncos' captain winded on the ground.
12 min: BANG AGAIN! Thaiday on the receiving end for the second time in a minute, Matulino smacks big Sam as he takes a hit-up!
16 min: Peter Wallace nails a surprising, subtle 40/20. This will give Brisbane their first attacking set of the game after 16 minutes...
18 min: VIDEO REFEREE - possible try to Jack Reed. Looks unlikely, the grounding is contentious...
19 min: TRY
TRY Brisbane Broncos
Scored by Jack Reed. Conversion attempt by Corey Parker successful.
He's gone up, he's come down, video referee Paul Simpkins can't tell if it's a try, hands it back to the on-field referee who awards a try - and Mt Smart blows up in unison. Reed has the try though, and Parker converts from the sideline to level the scores.
6 all
21 min: The momentum has been all with Brisbane since the 40/20. A penalty here sees Brisbane on the attack again.
24 min: TRY
TRY Brisbane Broncos
Scored by Alex Glenn. Conversion attempt by Corey Parker unsuccessful.
The penalty costs the Warriors and suddenly they find themselves behind, Alex Glenn crashing over 10m to the left of the posts. Parker's conversion attempt is wide.
Brisbane Broncos 10-6
28 min: End to end stuff here, the Warriors chancing their hand a bit, but so far coming up with nothing.
30 min: TRY
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by Shaun Johnson. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.
Shaun Johnson puts a huge kick up, Beale drops it for the Broncos and SJ himself is there to pick up the scraps and score for the Warriors. Maloney puts the home side back in front with a great conversion.
New Zealand Warriors 12-10
32 min: Broncos halfback PETER WALLACE is off injured.
33 min: Video referee here for the Warriors, the momentum has swung back to the home side for sure here - this should be a green light for Elijah Taylor.
34 min: TRY
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by Elijah Taylor. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.
Elijah Taylor capitalises on another Gerard Beale spill, getting it down. From almost the same position as the first two, Maloney nails the conversion again. Eight point lead for the hosts now.
New Zealand Warriors 18-10
38 min: Brisbane with error after error, now a drop-out...
40 min: TRY
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by Jacob Lillyman. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.
Jacob Lillyman barges over with a heavy run close to the line, on the back of a glut of possession for the home side. Echoes of last night's Eels-Dogs match with this Warriors dominance in the final ten of the first half. Maloney converts from the right of the posts for a 14-point halftime lead.
New Zealand Warriors 24-10
40 min: Halftime in a match that has serious echoes of the Eels-Bulldogs clash from last night... four tries to two, one of the tries from the losing side a dubious hold-up decision not given... and three tries from the hosts in the final ten minutes. To put us further in the twilight zone, there are no fewer than five Ben's involved in today's game!
40 min: Second half underway - Broncos first possession.
42 min: Video referee for a possible try to Jack Reed. Another case of we can't see the ball getting to the ground... another refs call perhaps?
43 min: Another refs call it is - this time NO TRY - knock on Jack Reed, Warriors 20m restart.
45 min: Broncos ruled to have knocked on after a Warriors chargedown mid-field.
47 min: The Warriors give up possession anyway and the Broncos are now up on the Warriors line peppering it with hard runners. No luck after five tackles, Warriors pounce on a shallow grubber.
49 min: Video referee possible Broncos try, this time it's Ben Te'o who thinks he's got it down on the line...
50 min: TRY
TRY Brisbane Broncos
Scored by Ben Te'o. Conversion attempt by Corey Parker successful.
Ben Te'o reaches out and slams the ball on the chalk for the Broncos, closing the gap now with Parker's conversion bring the margin down to eight points.
New Zealand Warriors 24-16
56 min: McCullough down on his haunches, looks like an injury...
59 min: Brisbane with all the running in the last ten minutes, but some stoic Warriors defence is keeping them out. Handling and discipline letting the home side down at the moment.
62 min: Dropout forced by Brisbane. Warriors will have to defend another set here.
65 min: The Broncos spill the pill on the attack, then the Warriors go up the other end and wind up doing the same thing, Feleti Mateo dropping a sitter.
68 min: Warriors put it up to the left corner, Vatuvei just not tall enough (believe it or not) to grab the ball as it flies into touch.
71 min: Handling errors aplenty here at Mt Smart. Warriors and Broncos both spilling the ball at will.
74 min: TRY
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by Feleti Mateo. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.
Mateo close to the line... TRY! Finally one team breaks, it's the Broncos and as a result the Warriors wrap up the game. Maloney makes it five from five with the conversion.
New Zealand Warriors 30-16
77 min: The Broncos throwing it around like nothing else but no dice.
James Maloney has a stab at a long-range one-pointer with the clock winding down but it's wide.
New Zealand Warriors 30-16
80 min: TRY
TRY Brisbane Broncos
Scored by Sam Thaiday. Conversion attempt by Corey Parker unsuccessful.
Sam Thaiday charges onto an inside ball 20m from the line and storms past defenders to score a final-minute consolation. Parker misses to the right as the siren sounds in the background.
New Zealand Warriors 30-20

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