Matt Lodge fired up deluxe
Matt Lodge fired up deluxe

‘What’s he thinking?’: Ugly NRL moment

THE baby Brisbane Broncos have claimed a famous victory, coming back to defeat the Cronulla Sharks 24-22 at PointsBet Stadium.

The Broncos hit the lead with four minutes remaining and hung on for the famous victory.

The Sharks ran out to a 22-12 lead after 56 minutes and will lament poor goalkicking with Kyle Flanagan kicking one of the Sharks' five attempts.

Flanagan's shocker comes a week after Shaun Johnson's poor goalkicking cost them the match in a shock loss to the Bulldogs.

But a heated moment in the 59th minute of this match sparked a ferocious reaction.

Broncos prop Matt Lodge seemed to lash out while on his own line, seemingly tripping Sharks half Flanagan.

On Channel 9, immortal Andrew Johns immediately wanted the harshest penalty.

"In years gone by, a trip would be an automatic send off," Johns said.

Matt Lodge lashed out at Flanagan
Matt Lodge lashed out at Flanagan

On replay, it appeared as if Lodge just stood up holding Flanagan's leg and threw him to the ground. Johns summed it up, saying "UFC".

Over on Fox League, the commentators were blown away by the stunning vision.

Warren Smith called it "a brain explosion", while Greg Alexander was incredulous.

"He's got the ball, why would you trip someone? What's he thinking?," he said.

Earlier vision showed Flanagan had kneed Lodge in the head after he picked up the grubbered ball and was on the ground.

The throw was audacious, it was ugly and, the referees agreed, it was warranted with the referees awarding the penalty to the Broncos.

When he'd seen the earlier vision, Alexander flipped his opinion.

"Oh wow, he got a knee in the head from Flanagan," Alexander said.

Blocker said they'll have a look at that and Smith felt as though they might have a case to answer.

Kyle Flanagan kneed Lodge in the head.
Kyle Flanagan kneed Lodge in the head.

Channel 9's Peter Sterling thought it was an ugly look but wondered whether two wrongs made a right.

"A little unsavoury there," he said. "That does not look good. It certainly doesn't condone what Matt Lodge stood up and did but it's certainly provocation.

The ugly moment seemed to spur the Broncos on with Payne Haas crashing over in the next set of six.

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With six minutes to go, a strong run from Tevita Pangai Jr. set up Jake Turpin to score the winning try before Kotoni Staggs slotted the winning goal.

It was a tough loss to handle for the Sharks, who scored more tries and saw Josh Morris score a hat-trick just 10 minutes to blow the Broncos away early in the second.

It was Morris' first hat-trick since his Bulldogs days in 2012.

But it wasn't enough as baby Broncos settled and hit back at the back end of the game to snatch the famous win.

It saw the Broncos snap a three-match losing streak and increased the Sharks' run of defeats to three.

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