Hunt lifts Broncos to flashy win
BRONCOS legend Darren Lockyer last night hailed Ben Hunt as Brisbane’s version of Andrew Johns after the classy halfback orchestrated a 34- 0 rout of the Titans at Suncorp Stadium.
As predicted, the Queensland showdown turned into a demolition derby as Brisbane’s slick triumvirate of Hunt, Anthony Milford and Darius Boyd teased and tormented the embattled Titans.
Before 27,665 fans, the Broncos cemented top spot with their eighth consecutive win. If halfbacks decide premierships, coach Wayne Bennett must be relieved to have a talismanic No. 7 in Hunt.
Lockyer was the greatest No. 6 of his generation and waged some absorbing battles with ex- Newcastle half Johns, who was crowned the code’s eighth Immortal in 2012.
So when the former Broncos skipper likened Hunt to Johns in Channel 9’ s commentary, the gravity of the comparison was compelling.
Hunt is not yet in Johns’ league but his first- half solo try was classic “Joey” – straightening the attack, dummying through the line and using lower- body strength to surge past the hapless fullback. “That reminds you of Andrew Johns,” Lockyer hollered. “He has it all this kid.”
With Hunt in cruise control, the Broncos bolted to an 18- 0 half- time lead before a spiteful second- half which saw Adam Blair reported for a 20 minutes after the break through Elliot, Sam Moa and James Maloney to move the score to 26- 8 and put the result beyond doubt. The win keeps the Roosters sitting comfortably in the top four with six rounds of the regular season remaining, while the Tigers remain rooted to the foot of the NRL ladder.
Rival custodians Roger Tuivasa- Sheck and James Tedesco were the best for their shot on Kane Elgey 44th minute.
The rookie Titans halfback ( concussion) did not return to the field and to compound the Coast’s plight, Josh Hoffman was booked for kneeing Jordan Kahu in the 61st minute.
While Hunt was superb, Brisbane had weapons all over the park. Back- rower Alex Glenn ran like Johnny Raper in his pomp and Milford
a respective sides, with Maloney coming into his own for the Roosters after the break following a slow first half in front of 10,186 fans.
Chris Lawrence limped off in the second minute for the Tigers with an ankle injury and didn’t return.
Martin Taupau was put on report and sin- binned with four minutes to play for striking Maloney. showed lethal vision, creating tries for Jarrod Wallace and Glenn with razor- sharp short balls.
Inside 22 minutes, Boyd injected himself and used his speed to get outside Nene Macdonald before momentum took him across the tryline.
Then came sublime three- card trick involving Boyd and Hunt, who sliced through after Titans prop Ignatius Paasi became so nervous he swallowed a dummy and lunged at the Broncos fullback.
The Titans weren’t exactly terrible last night.
Their ruck defence could have been tighter, but on the score of class, the Titans and Broncos are polar opposites with diametrically- opposed ambitions.
ON FIRE: Ben Hunt of the Brisbane Broncos scores a try during last night’s 34- 0 crushing of the Titans.