Broncos run riot over Sea Eagles
The Broncos stampeded back to the top of NRL Telstra Premiership table after trampling Manly 44-10 at Suncorp Stadium on Friday night to equal their biggest ever win over the Sea Eagles.
The 44-10 scoreline matched Brisbane's effort against Manly from their inaugural match at Lang Park in 1988.
The 34-point win moves Brisbane into first place heading into their Round 14 bye, while the Sea Eagles remain perched on the bottom rung of the ladder.
The Broncos led 20-6 at half-time, dominating the opening forty minutes with four tries, 64-percent of possession, and a 91-percent completion rate compared to Manly's 67 percent.
Manly finished the game with a 56-percent completion rate which was compounded by 14 errors and 29 missed tackles as the Broncos ran in eight tries to two.
Broncos coach Wayne Bennett said the 44-10 scoreline was inflated by some fortuitous tries.
"We had a lot of luck tonight," Bennett said.
"There were a lot of close decisions out there which were fair tries but on another night the bounce of the ball might have not gone our way.
"There's probably three or four tries tonight that were lucky. We were competing well but on another night things could have gone against us."
After scoring three minutes before the break, the visitors crossed the line again in the 44th minute when Brett Stewart latched onto a Daly Cherry-Evans kick to bring the score to 20-10.
Cherry-Evans, who was met with a chorus of boos from the parochial crowd of 28,691 every time he touched the ball, broke through Brisbane's line on the last and sent his kick Stewart's way.
The Manly fullback was involved shortly after his try, dropping the ball off a Kieran Foran pass with the try-line at his mercy.
It was the let off the Broncos required and they soon steadied the ship with a penalty goal to makeshift goal-kicker Jordan Kahu.
Sea Eagles skipper Jamie Lyon left the field in the 54th minute with a hamstring injury and his absence led to Brisbane's fifth try as Jack Reed took advantage of Tom Symonds filling in at right centre to send Daniel Vidot over for his second try.
Reed was involved again only minutes later when his in-field grubber kick was scooped by Anthony Milford who also helped himself to a double.
Brisbane's potent left edge made further inroads into Manly's defence when Alex Glenn and Darius Boyd combined to send Reed over for a well-deserved four-pointer to take the scoreboard out to 38-10 with 12 minutes remaining.
The Mexican wave began to circle around Suncorp Stadium inside the final 10 minutes with the Broncos firmly in control of the contest.
Kahu iced the win with a converted try two minutes from fulltime to match the scoreline of the 1988 encounter.
Brisbane opened the scoring from their very first set after Justin Hodges benefited from Jorge Taufua's mistake from a Ben Hunt cross-field kick.
The Broncos scored again in bizarre circumstances when Ben Hunt crossed after scooping up a loose ball and racing past Manly's stagnate defence to make it 10-0 after 16 minutes.
Hulking winger Vidot justified his inclusion on the wing ahead of Lachlan Maranta by showing brute strength to burrow his way over in the corner under the attention of Manly trio Cherry-Evans, Stewart and Lyon.
Kahu failed to add the extras as the Broncos held a 14-point advantage.
Everything the Broncos touched turned to gold as the home side piled on further points when Milford evaded four Manly defenders to stretch out and plant the Steeden down for Brisbane's fourth try and a commanding 20-0 lead six minutes out from half-time.
The Sea Eagles struck back three minutes out from the break when Peter Hiku crossed unmarked out wide with Lyon nailing the sideline conversion to bring the deficit back to 14 points.
Brisbane Broncos 44 (Daniel Vidot 2, Anthony Milford 2, Justin Hodges, Ben Hunt, Jack Reed, Jordan Kahu tries; Jordan Kahu 5 goals) def. Manly Sea Eagles 10 (Peter Hiku, Brett Stewart tries; Jamie Lyon 1 goal) at Suncorp Stadium. Crowd: 28,691. Half-time: Broncos 20-6. On report: Justin Horo (Sea Eagles). Holden Cup: 28-all.