Savelio injured as Haas and Fifita fire in Broncos' trial win
The pre-game hype about tyro forwards Payne Haas and David Fifita proved justified but a leg injury to new recruit Andre Savelio marred the Brisbane Broncos' 16-6 trial win over CQ Capras in Theodore on Saturday night.
Haas created havoc with his size and mobility at prop, and a smart offload by the 18-year-old man mountain eventually led to the opening try by speedy winger Corey Allan.
Just before quarter-time second-rower Savelio, recruited from Warrington, was assisted from the field after appearing to injure his knee while being tackled.
Broncos assistant coach Kurt Richards, who was at the helm for the team on the night, said scans would determine the extent of what appeared to be a nasty knee injury.
"Watching it live, it didn't look good," Richards told NRL.com.
"The physios are still unsure and we have got a seven and a half hour bus trip back [to Brisbane] until we get the scans.
"It is pretty disappointing for him. He's come a long way, he's trained hard this season ... and 14 minutes in he goes down with something like that. We are just hoping for the best for him."
Haas had some rough edges but in his first senior game for Brisbane, he showed why there is so much hype surrounding him.
His former Keebra Park High schoolboy teammate David Fifita, just 17, also showed glimpses of his immense talent with his mobility and offloading ability a highlight.
In the second half Fifita's right-handed drop-off was spilled but he had the presence of mind to double around to pick up the crumbs and race under the sticks to score.
Fifita's speed and game awareness was mightily impressive for his age as he announced himself as an edge back-rower of class.
"It was their first time to experience playing against men and I thought our younger guys were our better players and gave it a real crack," Richards said.
"If they keep working hard they could end up in first grade.
"David has got plenty of talent, while he is still learning defensively about a few key areas in his game.
"He has put his hand up to work on that, and there are things he really worked hard on there tonight. I think he got the rewards at the back end of the game because of how hard he was working defensively.
"Payne certainly ran hard. He's a big body and he didn't lack any courage out there against men. He's a bit banged up now and has a bit of a cork but the more he gets to play men, the better he will become."
Big Tom Flegler, another 18 year-old prop, made a series of robust rampages to suggest the Broncos have a nice selection of future star forwards to blood in the NRL if they can hang on to them.
Fifita has already been wrapped up by the Broncos until the end of 2020 and will get more experience against men when he lines up initially for Souths-Logan in the Intrust Super Cup.
Meanwhile, Allan's pace out wide was another feature in the trial for Brisbane, as was the composure of hooker Jake Turpin and the uncompromising charges of lock Patrick Mago against a willing and brave Capras side.