Penrith 26 – 24 Brisbane

Nathan Cleary steers Penrith Panthers to 3rd straight NRL title with comeback win over Brisbane Broncos; “It appears like a dream in the meanwhile,” mentioned Cleary; “We’re down however we’re by no means out, that is our mentality”

Final Up to date: 01/10/23 12:52pm

Nathan Cleary (left) and Isaah Yeo lift the Provan-Summons Trophy

Nathan Cleary (left) and Isaah Yeo elevate the Provan-Summons Trophy

Penrith half-back Nathan Cleary manufactured an astonishing 26-24 comeback victory over the Brisbane Broncos because the Panthers grew to become the primary workforce in 40 years to win three straight Nationwide Rugby League titles in a Grand Ultimate thriller on Sunday.

The Panthers seemed lifeless and buried once they trailed 24-8 on the hour mark with Cleary’s halves associate Jarome Luai off the pitch injured at Stadium Australia.

Cleary took the sport by the scruff of the neck, nonetheless, to virtually single-handedly deliver a fifth title to the membership from Sydney’s western reaches.

His break arrange a attempt for prop Moses Leota within the 62nd minute, his playmaking crafted a chance for centre Stephen Crichton to attain a second and Cleary himself scurried throughout the road for the third.

Cleary transformed all three along with his unerring boot, the final one sealing the primary hat-trick of successive NRL titles for the reason that Parramatta Eels aspect of the early Nineteen Eighties.

“It appears like a dream in the meanwhile,” mentioned Cleary after sharing a hug along with his father, Panthers coach Ivan.

“We’re down however we’re by no means out, that is our mentality. We simply needed to preserve preventing, that is what we do.”

After an unseasonably scorching spring day within the harbour metropolis, the match kicked off in temperatures of 30 levels Celsius with the depth of the early exchanges matching the atmospheric situations.

Penrith hooker Mitch Kenny opened the scoring with a attempt within the seventeenth minute after Brisbane botched a line drop-out and Cleary added a penalty on the half-hour mark.

Brisbane prop Thomas Flegler crashed over the road below the posts simply earlier than the break to chop the deficit to 8-6, nonetheless, earlier than Broncos five-eighth Ezra Mam put his stamp on the sport early within the second half.

The 20-year-old Torres Strait islander, an unheralded member of a workforce studded with excellent younger backs, showcased his explosive velocity to attain three tries in 10 minutes.

Mam seemed like being a shoe-in for the Clive Churchill Medal as participant of the match till Cleary snatched it from him in 18 outstanding minutes.

“Jeez we let that one slip,” mentioned Broncos half-back Adam Reynolds. “Cannot fault the trouble however that is a tough one to take.”


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