Match Report

Clinical Kiwis stun Kangaroos in historic upset

A 12-0 scoreline had the New Zealand faithful daring to dream at halftime and the fairytale final continued as the Kiwis ran in another 18 unanswered points to hand the Kangaroos their heaviest ever defeat.

Seven days after going down to their Tasman rivals 36-18 in Melbourne, Michael Maguire's side were all class with halves Jahrome Hughes and Dylan Brown steering the ship and wingers Ronaldo Mulitalo and Jamayne Isaako dazzling on the edges.

Collins at the double as Kangaroos down Kiwis

Australia never trailed in the contest and after an opening 21 minutes in which the match ebbed and flowed, they always enjoyed a lead on the scoreboard, with a double from front-rower Lindsay Collins and the accurate boot of returning winger Valentine Holmes doing much of the damage at AAMI Park. 

While Australia were already 12-6 up when he entered the field in the 27th minute, Harry Grant was the man who kicked the Kangaroos up a notch when the game sat in the balance, while fellow Queenslander Patrick Carrigan was big off the bench too, carrying 16 times for 145 metres. 

Jamayne man for New Zealand as Kiwis deliver statement win

Named the Ken Irvine Medallist following his 24 tries during the Telstra Premiership season, Isaako's 25th and 26th tries of 2023 gave Michael Maguire's side a commanding early lead that they wouldn't look back from, running away with the contest to secure their first shut-out win on home soil in over two decades.

New Zealand edge Ireland in classic to book Argentina semi-final

Leicester Fainga’anuku’s try helped the All Blacks race into a 13-0 lead before centre Bundee Aki danced his way over for Ireland. Ardie Savea responded but Jamison Gibson-Park’s try, with Aaron Smith in the sin-bin for a deliberate knock-on, saw their lead cut to 18-17 at half-time.

Will Jordan bagged his fifth try of the tournament but a penalty try, with hooker Codie Taylor also getting a yellow card, saw Ireland again get within one point.

Kangaroos flex their muscle to slide past Samoa in opener

With player of the match Payne Haas and fellow big man Tino Fa'asuamaleaui leading the charge the Kangaroos blew the game open before their rivals had time to settle.

The world champions opened their account in the fifth minute when Haas took a short ball from Isaah Yeo and carried three defenders over the tryline with him to make it 6-0.

Four minutes later it was skipper James Tedesco leaving Izack Tago in his wake on the left edge before Fa'asuamaleaui powered over in the 13th minute and the Kangaroos had a 16-0 lead.

History three-peats itself as Cleary masterclass guides Panthers to glory

Trailing by 16 points after an Ezra Mam hat-trick had put the Broncos on track for their first title in 17 years, Cleary took the game by the scruff of the neck to ensure the Panthers would emulate the Eels of 1981-82-83 with a three-peat.

Cleary put Moses Leota over for a try with 17 minutes to play and then came up with a 40-20 before scoring the final try in the 77th minute to leave the Broncos shellshocked and the Panthers faithful in raptures.

Australia edge past PNG to win PM's XIII clash

Leading by just six as the closing minutes approached, it was only a Tyrell Sloan try just before full-time that secured victory for the visitors, who made 17 errors across the match and struggled to shake off PNG as a result. 

 

Despite fielding only a handful of players with NRL experience – in comparison to Australia who had eight World Cup winners and 12 players who appeared at Origin level this year in their squad – PNG were right in the contest for the first hour and had Australia sweating before their late flurry of points. 

Walsh sublime as Broncos advance to grand final

Lining up against the side he spent the first two seasons of his NRL career with for the first time since moving back to his junior club, Walsh was immense with ball in hand and inflicted much of the damage in front of a crowd of 52,273 at Suncorp Stadium. 

The 21-year-old Queensland star's class and confidence was more evident than ever as he shook off an early intercept – which gifted Dallin Watene-Zelezniak a 60-metre runaway try – to set up three tries and lay on six line breaks for teammates, before leaving the field for an early rest with four left to play. 

Party like it's 2011: Warriors down Knights to reach prelim final

After finishing last season in 15th place the Warriors have produced a remarkable turnaround in 2023 and are now just 80 minutes away from a first grand final appearance since 2011.

A mistake by Knights winger Greg Marzhew in the opening set of the game opened the door for Shaun Johnson to lay on a try for Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad, who left Bradman Best in his wake to make it 4-0.

Melbourne march on after last gasp win over Roosters

The Roosters led 13-12 with less than two minutes to play but the Storm stole the final moments when a Cameron Munster crossfield kick ended in the hands of a leaping Warbrick, bringing 19,000 fans to their feet in Melbourne.

The victory booked the Storm a spot in their eighth preliminary final in the past nine seasons, setting up a 2020 grand final rematch against reigning premiers Panthers at Accor Stadium.