Report over Mead worries Bronco Wallace - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Report over Mead worries Bronco Wallace

By Laine Clark 13/09/2009 03:58:56 PM Comments (0)

All the signs pointed to Peter Wallace having a shocker at Skilled Park on Saturday night.

By the sixth minute the Broncos halfback had been dubiously placed on report for a high shot on Gold Coast winger David Mead.

And early in the second half Wallace gifted the Titans' other flying winger - Kevin "Flash" Gordon - an intercept try which even Broncos coach Ivan Henjak later described as the game's turning point.

It was enough to do the young bloke's head in.

But in a sign of a new-found maturity, Wallace regrouped to emerge as the architect of Brisbane's thrilling 40-32 NRL qualifying finals win over the Gold Coast.

However, Wallace dropped his guard somewhat after the match, admitting he was a "little bit" nervous about being placed on report.

"He (Mead) stepped inside me, so it was a bit of a reaction," Wallace said.

"I only got him on the shoulder first too, so hopefully I'll be alright.

"I'm not sure about points and stuff like that, but fingers crossed they'll see it was just a reaction and it'll be right."

Wallace has had to live with enormous pressure since inevitably being thrown the "next Alfie" tag upon his arrival last year.

It is a comparison impossible to live up to, but it may sit just a little bit easier for Wallace judging by his performance at the Skilled Park pressure cooker.

Indeed Broncos captain Darren Lockyer hoped all of his young brigade had learnt a valuable lesson from the thriller.

"We take a lot out of the first half, the second half will keep our feet on the ground," he said.

"Defensively we have a bit of work to do.

"But our self belief to hang in there and stay in the battle was a good thing for us.

"Since our run started six weeks ago we've had to play semi-final football each week to win (and make the top eight).

"That's been a good learning curve for them and that was another step up (against the Titans)."

Wallace's sublime kicking game set up two Israel Folau tries in the first half that helped Brisbane grab a 28-10 halftime lead.

And Wallace reckons his form with the boot can only get better.

"Definitely. I keep improving week to week, but I've been doing a lot of work on it at training - so I'm just happy it's paying off," Wallace said.

In an ominous warning, Henjak said Wallace and his Broncos could only improve in the finals.

"We got what we came here for. We kept destiny in our own hands which was good," Henjak said.

"We don't have to be our best now but we have to good to keep winning games.

"There's a lot we can still work on. We should have put that game away and we came up with a lack of patience and some ill discipline."

Pretty scary stuff from a team that has rumbled into the second week of finals with six straight wins.

It wasn't just the players who received a finals learning experience at Skilled Park.

"I copped some abuse. It was pretty hostile," Henjak said of his finals coaching debut.

"I don't know about the players but I was getting some in the box."

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