Full Time
7:50pm Sat September 23, 2023
Finals Week 3 - Suncorp Stadium, Milton / Yuggera-Turrbal - Crowd: 52273

Match Overview

The Brisbane Broncos have stormed into the Grand Final after an emphatic display of attacking football saw them absolutely dominate the Warriors, who simply couldn't keep up with the fast moving Broncos attack.

The Warriors opened the scoring in just the fourth minute courtesy of a beautiful set play on the short side. Shaun Johnson at first receiver, linked with the trailing runner Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad who drew the defender early before sending a nice ball to the unmarked Dallin Watene-Zelezniak who scored in the corner. Adam Pompey failed to convert from the sideline.

The Broncos wasted no time to respond, hitting back in the 8th minute. On the first tackle after getting a set restart and just 5 metres from the Warriors line, Billy Walters at dummy half threw a dummy and then dived over near the posts to score a classic rake's try. Adam Reynolds converted to give the Broncos a 6-4 lead.

The points kept flowing when Watene-Zelezniak snatched a brilliant intercept near halfway and raced 55 metres to score. Pompey again failed to convert from out wide. After 13 minutes the Warriors were back in front 8-6.

4 minutes later the Broncos hit back again. Reece Walsh on the left side took the ball to the line, shaped to pass long but then hit Herbie Farnworth with a beautiful short ball and the big centre stretched out and scored, despite being tackled around the boot. Reynolds converted and the Broncos were back in front 12-8.

In the 20th minute, the Broncos went quickly on the attack courtesy of a great run by Payne Haas. On the next play, they shifted to the left quickly where Kurt Capewell got out of a tackle and then put Jesse Arthars over for a try in the corner. Reynolds converted from the sideline, to extend their lead by 10 points.

The Broncos kept piling the misery onto the Warriors just 4 minutes later when Ezra Mam linked with the fast moving Walsh who exploded through a gap, drew the defender and then put Walters over for his second try. Reynolds converted.

The Warriors stopped the Broncos onslaught in the 29th minute when they shifted the ball left to Johnson who passed out the back to Te Maire Martin, who drew and passed to Pompey who shuffled the ball quickly along to Marcelo Montoya and the winger evaded a tackle before diving over in the left corner. Pompey failed to convert from the sideline.

The final ten minutes of the half saw both sides ball control drop off and subsequently, the points stopped flowing. A Warriors turnover with 8 seconds remaining in the half gave Adam Reynolds an opportunity to pot a 2 point field goal from halfway, but it was deflected and only travelled 20 metres. At halftime, 7 tries were scored and the Broncos held a 24-12 lead.

The Broncos went close to scoring twice in the opening 10 minutes of the second half, through Jordan Riki in the 42nd minute, when he made a break but was brought down and wrapped up just inches short of the line on the last tackle and then in the 48th minute when a Kurt Capewell offload put Farnworth over, but the pass was ruled forward.

Brisbane finally got the scoreboard moving in the second half in the 62nd minute with a controversial try. Walsh made a break through the line and then threw a very obvious but unintentional forward pass that finds Cobbo, whose pass back inside to Riki also looked forward, and Riki raced away to score under the posts. Reynolds converted to give Brisbane a 30-12 lead.

On the 59th minute, Kotoni Staggs was obstructed from chasing a Reynolds grubber by Pompey which resulted in the Warriors centre being sent to the sin bin for ten minutes.

In the following set, Ezra Mam received the ball out wide on the left, stepped back inside, beating Bayley Sironen, gets through a gap before getting bumped over in a tackle attempt, before rolling over the tryline to score. Reynolds converts.

Brisbane brought up 40 points in the 70th minute when, off the back of a great run by Haas on the previous play, they sent the ball left to Walsh who quickly passed along to Farnworth running back in against the grain and he strolled through a big gap to score. Walsh converted.

Watene-Zelezniak tries to barge over from dummy half in the 75th minute but he was held up.

Some open footy closed out the final 5 minutes of the game, but neither side could improve their score, Brisbane victorious 42-12 and advancing to the Grand Final.

3. Reece Walsh

Walsh was electric. No one could touch him, phenomenal performance from the Broncos fullback, genuinely one of the best games of his career.

2. Payne Haas

Huge game in the big man in the middle, made a number of big breaks which set up a few of the Broncos tries. Warriors struggled to contain him for the whole match.

1. Patrick Carrigan

Carrigan had a typical workmans game, tireless in defence, made plenty of tough metres in the middle. Strong game all round.