BRISBANE’S flogging at the hands of Parramatta has been compounded by the loss of prop Korbin Sims for the rest of the season to a fractured arm.
In a bizarre conclusion to a 52-34 upset that had Brad Arthur fuming and Wayne Bennett at his philosophical best afterwards, Sims’ ill-timed injury further rocks the Broncos title hopes and robs them of a key enforcer for the finals.
Scans on Friday morning revealed Sims sustained a fractured forearm late in Thursday’s thrashing, with the injury requiring surgery and a six-week recovery period.
Live stream the 2017 NRL Telstra Premiership on FOX SPORTS. Get your free 2-week FOXTEL NOW trial and start watching in minutes. SIGN UP NOW!
That time frame would also put Sims’ chances of representing Fiji at the end of season World Cup in serious doubt.
NRL: The Parramatt Eels bag a dream start to their match against the Broncos, capitalising on an Adam Blair mistake to score in just 11 seconds, an NRL record
Eels’ fastest ever NRL try
It’s a cruel blow for the 25-year-old, who copped a $150,000-plus pay cut to move from Newcastle to Brisbane in January, and has since rediscovered the form that had him touted for Origin honours two years ago.
The 2017 finals series would have been his first in five seasons of first grade.
Returning young bucks Joe Ofahengaue (suspension) and Tevita Pangai Jr (hamstring) will at least reinforce the Broncos for next Thursday’s Queensland derby with the Cowboys, a contest they’ll need to win to ensure a critical top four finish.
Ben Ikin, Nathan Ryan and Ben Glover discuss the problems facing the Titans, Broncos succession planning and Souths turning the corner.
You can also subscribe via iTunes or for Android users, listen on the iPP Podcast Player app.
Had a casual observer wandered into the press conferences after an enthralling game — as YouTube reminds us has been the case with ill-informed tennis reporters in recent years — they’d be forgiven for confusing the result based on the coaches reactions.
Bennett appeared reasonably nonplussed by his side’s capitulation, despite no side conceding 50 points in a match and going on to claim the premiership in the same season.
Arthur in turn came off reasonably ropeable at how the nine tries to six thumping had panned out.
NRL: Kenny Edwards is temporarily forced from the field after coping a stray boot
Broncs boot splits Kenny
“The start was good. That’s about all I’m happy with,” Arthur deadpanned in reference to Kirisome Auva’a’s opening try within 13 seconds of kick-off.
“Our discipline wasn’t anywhere near good enough. You can’t have 34 points scored against you and think that you can play good football deep into the finals.
“There were some moments there in the game that we didn’t get right and we need to get on top of it.
“We’re very excited that we won the game but it’s round 25. If we want to be playing deep into the finals that sort of performance won’t get the job done.
“… We need to be better a turning away the soft tries that we allow.”
NRL: Semi Radradra bags a hat-trick of tries in the space of 14 minutes to help Parramatta to a 30-10 lead at half time over Brisbane
Semi’s 14-minute hat-trick
Arthur’s gripe about the Eels discipline was reinforced by a 10-2 penalty count in favour of the home side before a Suncorp Stadium crowd of 29,058.
But Bennett backed his Broncos to bounce back after the “worst performance of the season”, provided they moved on immediately from conceding 50 points for just the second time on Queensland soil in their 29-year history.
“It’s a concern if we carry our baggage with us,” Bennett said.
“But we’ve done a lot of good things this season but this was our worst performance of the season.
“I hope it is not too difficult (to overcome) but the season doesn’t depend on one game in the home and away stuff over 26 rounds.
“We just have to recognise we had a bad night. We don’t avoid that, we don’t make excuses for it and move forward again.”
Originally published as Big Broncs casualty, Arthur filthy at Eels rout
Source: sports dailytelegraph