NSW’s State of Origin injury woes have deepened with Payne Haas ruled out of game two due to a hamstring strain.
A hat-trick by Kimiora Nati, including a historic penalty try, has helped Brisbane seal the inaugural NRL Women’s Premiership title with a 34-12 grand final romp over the Sydney Roosters at ANZ Stadium.
The Broncos set a benchmark in the maiden NRLW season that will be hard to match, finishing unbeaten for 2018 with a remarkable 110-30 points differential after four straight victories.
Brisbane five-eighth and Kiwi international Nati was the standout in front of 16,214 fans on Sunday afternoon, crossing three times thanks to the NRLW’s first penalty try.
Nati helped herself to a first-half double as the Broncos cruised to a 28-6 lead by the main break.
She scored a solo try in the sixth minute before nabbing her double 12 minutes later with some assistance from the video referee.
Nati was awarded the 18th-minute try after Roosters winger Taleena Simon kicked the ball out of her hands as the playmaker crashed over off an Ali Brigginshaw grubber.
There was no let-up in the second half as Nati somehow defied three defenders to get the ball down in the 46th minute to clinch her hat-trick and seal the result 34-12.
The Broncos saved their best until last on Sunday, posting their biggest total of the short season and eclipsing their 32-10 effort last round against the Warriors.
Remarkably, no other team managed to score 30 points in a match this year.
In contrast, the Roosters only scraped into the grand final on points differential with one win – a 26-0 blitz of St George Illawarra last week.
The difference in class emerged as Brisbane piled on five tries by the main break, at one stage scoring a point a minute in the 30-minute half.