The New Zealand Warriors have banished last weeks big defeat with a comprehensive 26-6 defeat of the Brisbane Broncos on a rare Sunday afternoon clash at Lang Park.
The New Zealand Warriors had plenty of questions to answer after their 32 point defeat at the hands of the Panthers last weekend and it started ominously again for the Warriors when Corey Oates looked to have first points after just 5 minutes. The Broncos were denied the points after a live decision of No Try by referee Grant Atkins was upheld by Ashley Klein in the bunker after Oates failed to ground the ball.
The Warriors first points came directly off Oates' failure to ground the ball when they went upfield off the ensuing 20m set before a penalty from the Broncos invited them into prime attacking territory. The Warriors got into attacking position and spun the ball left where Solomone Kata targeted the inexperienced outside back of Su'a and Isaako and Kata had too much strength to score the Warriors first of the afternoon.
The Warriors then again crossed to score when Adam Blair chased through a Shaun Johnson kick into the ingoal and looked to have scored only for the Warriors second rower to see a live decision from Grant Atkins based on Blair failing to ground the ball. The effort was knocked back by the Bunker after the replays showed Blair couldn't ground the ball. The denial of points by the Bunker didn't deter the Warriors who scored off the back of an error from Jamayne Isaako just three minutes later when Shaun Johnson ran the ball down the short side before a double pump sent Gerard Beale through a gap after the Broncos defence didn't read the play from Johnson.
The game hit it's spiciest point just after the half hour mark when Andrew McCullough reacted to contact from Chris Satae who had possession of the ball and players had to be separated after the ensuing push and shove. Both sides then had players sent to the sin bin with Satae sent for 10 minutes after it was ruled his raised forearm was the cause of McCullough's reaction which inturn saw McCullough sin binned for throwing punches.
The Warriors managed to hit the scoreboard one more time in the first half when Issac Luke spotted some lazy defence by the Broncos and he got through some flimsy defence and after Shaun Johnson the Warriors took a 16-0 lead into the Half Time break.
The Broncos were the team closest to score first in the second half with Darius Boyd crossing for an easy try although yet again the Broncos were to be denied by the Bunker when replays showed Joe Ofahengaue run an obstruction line which denied Roger Tuivasa-Sheck a chance to make a tackle on Boyd and the red lights were up for the Broncos.
The turn-around of play hurt the Broncos when again after being knocked back by the Bunker conceded points when a good run from Isaiah Papalii set the Warriors up into good field position and again the Warriors tested the Broncos right side defence when Solomone Kata scored his second for the afternoon. The Warriors again scored their next set of points off the ill-discipline of the Broncos after giving away two penalties in a row, the Warriors scored through Agnatius Paasi who scored after Blake Green sent him througha gap to score.
The Broncos capped off the game with a try of their own when Andrew McCullough took a dart from dummy half and got down low to score though again the Broncos needed the bunker to confirm whether they had points but this time the decision went in their favour when there was insufficent evidence to overturn the live call of Try from Grant Atkins.
Next Weekend both sides have tough contests with fellow top 8 opponents with the Broncos playing host to the fourth placed Panthers at Lang Park on Friday night whilst the Warriors host the Melbourne Storm at Mt Smart Stadium next Sunday afternoon.