Fulltime score: Round 3 ROOSTERS 22 v BRONCOS 40
The Broncos came with an early blitzkrieg, which had the Roosters on the back foot for most of the evening and with injuries to key players, the Roosters never recovered and recorded their first loss of the season.
The Broncos on the other hand were nothing short of magnificent and some of their tries were scintillating to watch. School-boy winger Leon Bott left the entire Roosters side in his wake and he used the touchline as a high wire act to leave Craig Wing eating his dust and gave him a leg injury in the process.
The Roosters sorely missed the direction of Brad Fittler at crucial stages throughout the match and with Adrian Morley sidelined with concussion, the Roosters forward pack lacked the venom we have come to expect from them in years gone by.
A bumper crowd of over 23,000 were in attendance to watch the Broncos strut their stuff and if not for four missed goals from Darren Lockyer and the woeful officiating from both the referee and touch judges, the Broncos may have cracked fifty in quick time.
One of the many positives to emerge from this game was the Broncos' ability to rely on several play makers to execute plays when in the past the responsibility had fallen solely on the shoulders of Darren Lockyer. Tonight Brett Seymour and Karmichael Hunt both chimed in with excellent displays that kept the Roosters on the back foot for the entire match.
Former Rooster Justin Hodges had a bitter sweet return to Aussie Stadium, missing a tackle that led to an Amos Roberts try but late in the match he scored out wide to ensure the Broncos got the points and gave the Roosters faithful the ultimate insult, scoring a try against his former club.
Score details: ROOSTERS 22 Tries: Minichiello, Soliola, Roberts, Cross Goals: Fitzgibbon 3/4 BRONCOS 40 Tries: Tate 2, S Berrigan 2, Stagg, B Berrigan, Bott, Hodges Goals: Lockyer 4/8
Aussie Stadium. Crowd: 23,157 Referee: Tim Mander Half time: Broncos 14-6
By the clock: 0 min: A fine night in Sydney.
5 min: TRY - Broncos. Forward David Stagg scores following a kick ahead from Brett Seymour. Conversion from Darren Lockyer bounces on the cross bar and goes over. Broncos 6-0
8 min: TRY - Broncos. Barry Berrigan scores out wide after he races away from dummy half on his 40 metre line, combining with Karmichael Hunt on the way. Conversion Lockyer hits upright and is unsuccessful. Broncos 10-0
13 min: NEWS - Roosters are driven back some 30 metres on the last tackle when a kick goes wrong 10m out from the Broncos' line.
31 min: TRY - Broncos. Brent Tate scores a well deserved try after backing up out wide. Broncos with over 55% poessssion. Lockyer's sideline conversion unsuccessful after hitting upright. Broncos 14-0
36 min: TRY - Roosters. Full back Anthony Minichiello chimes and scores behind the posts and just inside the dead ball line. Conversion Craig Fitzgibbon. Broncos 14-6
40 min: NEWS - Long range field goal attempt from Lockyer goes wide.
HALF TIME: Broncos 14-6 Roosters coming back late in the first half after the Broncos dominated. Minichiello making plenty of metres to lift the Roosters. David Stagg a standout in defence for the Broncos while Barry Berrigan and Brent Tate are proving a handfull for their opposites. Broncos still with the runs on the board but it anyone's match.
Second half underway...
43 min: TRY - Roosters. Centre Iosia Soliola scores in the corner. The Roosters have come out firing in the second half. Broncos appeal for a forward pass. Conversion Fitzgibbon. Broncos 14-12
46 min: TRY - Broncos. Winger Leon 'Lightning' Bott takes off and races 50 metres down the sideline to score. The Broncos strike back. Conversion Lockyer. Broncos 20-12
56 min: TRY - Roosters. Amos Roberts scores out wide following a run of 40 metres, standing up Broncos' winger Justin Hodges on the way. Conversion unsuccessful. Broncos 20-16
60 min: TRY - Broncos. Shaun Berrigan scores after Lockyer breaks through the middle from in own side of half way. Lockyer makes no mistake with the conversion. Broncos 26-16
63 min: TRY - Broncos. Justin Hodges scores after Karmichael Hunt backs up Seymour and finds open space up the middle and from half way. Conversion unsuccessful. Broncos 30-16
70 min: NEWS - Roosters get repeat sets but the Broncos hold firm. Roosters need to score three times in 10 minutes. Looks like the Broncos will get the money.
72 min: TRY - Broncos. Brent Tate gets a double after putting on a big step. The Broncos this time carving them up wide of the ruck. Broncos 36-16
75 min: TRY - Broncos. Shaun Berrigan gets a double, scoring in the corner. Conversion unsuccessful. Broncos 40-16
78 min: TRY - Roosters Ryan Cross scores next to the posts following a lucky bounce as Broncos' fullback Hunt is down with cramp. Conversion Fitzgibbon. Broncos 40-22
FULL TIME: Broncos 40-22 A strong showing from the Roosters but the Broncos just too classy with lock David Stagg the hardest working forward in defence while prop Shane Webcke wasn't far away. Brent Tate, Darren Lockyer, Karmichael Hunt, Brett Seymour and the Berrigans all leading the way in attack. For the Roosters, Ryan Cross, Amos Roberts, Anthony Minichiello and Jason Cayless were standouts. But with injuries mounting - notably Craig Wing (leg) and Adrian Morley (concussion) - they ran short of troops and were simply over run by the better team on the day.
----------------------------------------- Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - D Stagg (Broncos) 2 - B Tate (Broncos) 1 - D Lockyer (Broncos) -----------------------------------------