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Tupou Makes History as Roosters Fall at The Gabba

The Sydney Roosters fell to the Brisbane Broncos 32-10 in a fiery battle at The Gabba on Thursday evening. 

Down by 20 at the break, the Tricolours worked hard to stay in the contest with strong defence, before Luke Keary set up Daniel Tupou in the corner with a chip-kick to make him the Club's all-time greatest try-scorer. 

The Roosters rallied in defence early, with four men in every tackle to keep the Broncos behind the 50 metre line on their opening set. 

Racing towards Brisbane's line, the Tricolours were penalised for being inside 10 metres, giving the hosts their first opportunity to creep upfield with a kick for touch. 

With field position in their favour, the Broncos were granted more time in possession following a set restart, but brilliant last-line defence from James Tedesco stopped a barnstorming Kurt Capewell who broke through and made it centimetres from the stripe before being shut down. 

On the next play, Herbie Farnworth twisted through the Roosters defence to plant the ball on the tryline, claiming first points, with Adam Reynolds kicking the conversion to establish a six-nil lead. 

Sydney looked to return serve with a left edge play a minute after the restart, but a strong run from Egan Butcher came to a screeching halt when the young backrower was tackled awkwardly and thrown onto his back - later resulting in a failed head injury assessment (HIA). 

With ball in hand after Butcher let go of possession following the heavy hit, the Broncos piggybacked into their attacking half after the Roosters were penalised for holding down. 

Another heroic try-saving tackle by the Tricolours back-line, this time from Billy Smith, momentarily kept the Broncos at bay, before Reece Walsh kicked the ball over the defensive line, connecting with Ezra Mam who grounded it in-goal. Reynolds made no mistake from in-front, notching the hosts to a 12-point lead. 

In the 25th minute, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves was penalised and put on report for a high tackle on Payne Haas. Reynolds took the opportunity to kick the penalty goal to carry Brisbane to a 14-point advantage. 

A Terrell May offload unleashed James Tedesco up the middle two minutes later, with the Tricolours storming into their attacking half. The speedy Skipper cut through the line and grounded the ball a few plays later, only to have the video referee overrule the try, deeming Nat Butcher obstructed Reynolds. 

Granted their sixth penalty of the opening half, the Broncos capitalised once more, this time with Reynolds splitting the defence with a dummy, before passing to Patrick Carrigan who crashed over. The Brisbane Captain converted the try to give the hosts a 20-0 lead at the break. 

A poor fifth-tackle kick by Walsh allowed the Roosters to open the second half with a full set. Within 10 metres of the try-line, Joseph Manu put boot to ball in an attempt to get Easts on the board with an ensuing double knock-on helping the visitors cause. 

On the restart, the Broncos were penalised for being offside on the scrum, but a wayward offload by the Roosters handed possession straight back to the hosts. 

The men from Bondi defended their line tirelessly following a handling error and a goal-line drop-out that allowed the Broncos to stay within range. The period of possession came to a close when Brisbane were denied a try for being offside. 

Easts ended the second-half stalemate with a pin-point chip-kick from Luke Keary, who aimed to connect with Daniel Tupou in the air. The towering Tongan representative leapt high to bat the ball back to Billy Smith who picked up the scraps and crossed in the 65th minute. 

Smith Crashes Over

On the restart the Roosters allowed the Broncos to respond following a handling error, with Kotoni Staggs grabbing the loose ball and coasting over to give his team a 20-point lead, with Reynolds converting to make the margin 26-4. 

Brandon Smith snatched the short restart to give the Roosters another chance to claim points and they made the most of the opportunity with Keary's kick finding it's target in the corner.

Racing towards the ball with open hands, Tupou gathered and crossed the line for the 140th time, becoming the Club's all-time greatest try-scorer. Sandon Smith kicked the conversion from the sideline to reduce the deficit to 16. 

Tupou Claims Try 140 and a Club Record

With two minutes remaining, a kick from Billy Smith was gathered by Mam who raced 90 metres to score under the posts, with Reynolds putting the cherry on top for the Broncos to make the scoreline 32-10. 

Sydney Roosters 10 (Billy Smith, Daniel Tupou tries, Sandon Smith goal) def by Brisbane Broncos 32 (Herbie Farnworth, Ezra Mam, Patrick Carrigan, Kotoni Staggs, Ezra Mam tries, Adam Reynolds 6 goals)

Acknowledgement of Country

Sydney Roosters respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.