Rookie injury mars Broncos’ trial win
BRONCOS rookie Andre Savelio's NRL dream is in tatters after the promising English recruit suffered a suspected ACL tear in Saturday night's 16-6 trial win over the Central Capras.
Brisbane's pre-season has already claimed its first victims, with Savelio (knee) and centre Tom Opacic (hamstring) suffering setbacks in the Broncos' opening hitout at Theodore in Central Queensland.
Savelio's night lasted just 14 minutes before his knee buckled running into the Capras defensive line. Play was stopped for two minutes as Broncos trainers attended to Savelio, who looked in severe pain before being carried off the field.
The 110kg back-rower will have scans on Monday on a possible season-ending rupture. Opacic, meanwhile, lasted 35 minutes before hobbling off with a minor hamstring complaint.
Savelio is keen to make his mark in the NRL after terrorising opponents in the English Super League, but this is a nightmare start the 22-year-old can do without.
"There is a chance it's his ACL (anterior cruciate ligament)," Broncos assistant coach Kurt Richards said.
"It looked pretty bad. The physios reckon it's one of the ligaments.
"It's shattering for the poor bloke. Andre has come all the way from England and has settled in well so hopefully it's not too serious."
The Savelio injury saga aside, it was a scrappy display by the youthful Broncos.
Scores were locked 6-all at half-time before Broncos winger Corey Allan scored his second try in the 43rd minute, slicing through to give Brisbane a 10-6 lead.
The locals peppered Brisbane's line for most of the second half, but a try against the run of play to Broncos rookie David Fifita in the 68th minute broke the Capras' hearts.
Rookie Broncos prop Payne Haas was best on ground, with the 18-year-old monster offloading at will and regularly tearing through the rucks.
Brisbane halves Todd Murphy and Shaun Nona were disappointing with the former doing little to press his claims for the Broncos' No. 14 jumper for the NRL premiership.
"I was really happy with our younger players," Richards said.
"Payne Haas was outstanding and David Fifita was very good ... the guys defended really well."
BRISBANE 16 (C Allan 2, D Fifita tries; J Isaako 2 goals) CENTRAL CAPRAS 6 (N Bassani try; C Broadhurst goal) at Theodore.