Sea Eagles Vs Broncos Preview

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This game holds special importance for the Broncos – they’re in their 20th year and Manly were their first opponents in the comp back in 1988. However, the real celebrations will occur at Suncorp in round 21 when the Broncos will have all their Origin stars available.

Origin is never kind to Brisbane. This time last year the “Baby Broncos”, so called because of the number of inexperienced or debutant players they are forced to field, were flogged 34-14 by Souths, who were able to jettison a12-game losing streak.

This year is no kinder – Brisbane is missing seven players to Origin. They’ll blood two newcomers while five others have played a combined 10 games this year.

But the table-topping Sea Eagles are also under-strength. They’ll field three debutants – including their centres combination in the absence of Jamie Lyon and Steve Matai.

Watch out Sea Eagles: Hard-running centre David Stagg will sort out newcomers Shane Neumann and Nick Bradley-Qualilawa. Watch for the Broncos’ back rowers to scout wide and hit them as well.

Watch out Broncos: Manly’s kickers are the masters at forcing an error – their 14.1 per cent strike rate is the best in the comp.

Where it will be won: The Broncos may struggle to contain the exciting Manly back three. Potent strike weapons Brett Stewart, Michael Robertson and Chris Hicks all figure in the top seven tryscorers for 2007, notching 8, 6 and 6 four-pointers respectively.

The History: Played 26; Sea Eagles 10, Broncos 15, drawn 1. The home side holds the advantage at Brookvale 7-4, and it was the venue for the draw. But the Broncos have won four of the past five encounters, with the home side’s win a 21-20 nail-biter at home in 2005. The Broncos won both games last year, including a 16-10 win at Brookvale.

Conclusion: A Brisbane win would have the stewards swabbing the Manly squad. The visitors’ $4 starting price is their longest in memory and it would appear justified – they’re just missing too many troops who contribute significantly each week. Petero Civoniceva is topping the comp for running metres having clawed 1.5km to date; he’s not there. Neither is Karmichael Hunt, whose 142-metre bursts each game are crucial to their cause. Those two plus Justin Hodges have combined for 433 hit-ups in ’07 – the most by any trio at any club.

Yes the Sea Eagles will miss Brent Kite, Steven Bell, Matai and Lyon but they still have a crucial combination in hooker Michael Monaghan, half Matt Orford, pivot Travis Burns and fullback Stewart that should get them home. The Sea Eagles have won their past seven games at “Fortress Brookvale”. A big Monday night crowd is expected for this one.

Match officials: Referee – Jared Maxwell; Sideline Officials – Mohamad Fajajo & Matt Cecchin; Video ref – Steve Nash.

Televised: FoxSports 3 – live 7pm.


Journey Man
i think its more likely that neumann will play on the wing if hicks is centre, he has more speed and will be asked to do less defencive work. Came here as a winger originally too.


Des picking Neumann from jersey flegg is a huge call especially against the broncos. It doesn;t say much about the other PL centres.

Hopefully he can pl;ay well as it might encourage Des to be more adventurous and pick more young players.


i think its more likely that neumann will play on the wing if hicks is centre, he has more speed and will be asked to do less defencive work. Came here as a winger originally too.

I dunno about that. Neumann says defence is the strength of his game. He's quick as well, but he's more well known in Flegg for being a defensive centre.

And Neumann won't be on the same side of the field as Hicks anyway - if Hicks plays in the centres, then NBQ will be on the wing. But seeing as NBQ has been playing solely in the centres in PL since he came back this year...I'd think it'll all stay roughly as it is.

Hicks has come moved in field a few times this year anyway - such as in the Raiders game. Moved closer to the action a few times, got more involved and make 3 line breaks!
Geez I would feel a lot more confident if Matai was playing - having our 3 best Centers out could really hurt us. How long is he out for? I didn't even see if he contested the charge. Geez I hate the Broncos.


Gone for week with the early plea.

Pretty lucky result in the end, but he has 96 carry-over points. So his next charge is almost certain to be a fairly sizeable one.


UFO Hunter
Yep, I love the meters he makes, whether its from dummy half or where ever but when he makes a tackle I hold my breath.

Mind you this is his first suspension in a while.


Winging it
Yep, I love the meters he makes, whether its from dummy half or where ever but when he makes a tackle I hold my breath.
Exactly. He provides a lot of go forward at crucial times but from the club's perspective in the week he is really needed he is on the sidelines.

Jatz Crackers

First Grader
Mattai does good. And Mattai does bad. He definitely has a jeckle & hyde thing going on with his style of play and iI can understand why it is that it ****s people.

he makes good metres coming out of own half
he can make a good line break
he can provide some solid aggressive defence
he has an intensity that provides a lift to the side

can have brain explosions and give away penalties
poor read in defence
seems to have some sort of propensity for injuries (does everyone notice the amount of times he comes out of from being tackled clutching a shoulder or knee etc)
can be a solo man sometimes & forgets his support

I like what he adds to the side, but I weigh up the pros and cons and then consider why it is that he isnt in the lineup this weeked. We needed him there and he has devalued his worth by being unavailable. More than ever he needs to come back through PL & earn his spot. Its becoming clear the reason why he comes straight back into the side is because Des has a hardon for Lyon at 5/8

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