Brisbane Broncos survive scare from Newcastle Knights
Brisbane have been forced to overcome a halftime deficit to survive a scare against Newcastle, as they held off the struggling Knights 34-22.
Without Queensland State of Origin forwards Josh McGuire and Matt Gillett, the Broncos trailed 12-6 at halftime and suffered a second-half lapse before they powered home on Saturday in Newcastle.
The loss marked the eighth time this season the Knights have blown a halftime lead, as they inch even closer to a third consecutive wooden spoon through their seventh straight loss.
The win moved the Broncos provisionally back into the top four, ahead of Manly's clash with the Wests Tigers on Sunday.
Five-eighth Anthony Milford also got through the McDonald Jones Stadium match unscathed on his return from a shoulder dislocation.
After they trailed by six at the break, the Broncos scored three tries in their first four sets after halftime, the first of which a 70-metre effort from centre James Roberts.
However after Chanel Mata'utia and Dane Gagai crossed in short time, the Knights were back within two points with 15 minutes to play.
Gagai was terrific for the Knights just three days after claiming the Wally Lewis Medal as player of the Origin series, as he ran 164 metres and broke five tackles in the loss.
But he gave away their best chance to reclaim the lead when he broke free from a Brisbane error, only to pass the ball straight to opposition forward Adam Blair.
Former Knight Korbin Sims and winger Jonus Pearson sealed the match for Brisbane in the final 10 minutes.