It was the Broncos who took bragging rights in the inaugural Deadly Choices All Star Invitational with a 44-36 win over the Titans at Cbus Super Stadium this afternoon.
In a highly entertaining contest which featured throwback plays such as mouse-traps, toe-pokes and post-try celebrations, there was an early scratching with Broncos fullback Barry Berrigan going down with a hamstring injury in the warm-up.
In a high-scoring first-half which saw seven tries it was the Broncos who took a slim 20-18 lead with both sides putting in a high-standard of footy.
But it was the Broncos who ran away with the game in the second-half putting on four unanswered tries to race away to a 44-24 lead before the Titans scored two late consolation tries including a long-range effort from Chris Walker's daughter Harper to reduce the full-time deficit back to 44-36.
It was the Titans who opened the scoring through crowd-favourite Preston Campbell who dummied his way through the line before beating the fullback to score untouched under the posts giving Brad Davis an easy conversion for a 6-0 lead after six minutes.
The Titans went back-to-back with some razzle dazzle footy down the touchline before Clinton Toopi finished it off by rolling over to score next to the posts. With Davis converting, the Titans took a 12-0 lead.
But the Broncos hit-back in the 13th minute on the back of some crafty play by Shaun Berrigan to spread the ball out to a barnstorming Daniel Vidot before the Samoan Ghost charged his way across the line to reduce the deficit back to 12-4.
It was a former Titan who set-up the visitors second try with Scott Prince rocketing a cut-out pass to the Pearl, Steve Renouf in his trademark headgear who drew-and-passed to Steve Michaels to score in the corner. With Prince unable to convert, the Titans lead 12-8 with 11 minutes remaining in the half.
With the momentum in their favour, the Broncos locked the scores up through a try to duel-International Brad Thorn. With Prince failing with his first two attempts the kicking duties went to Chris Walker who added the extras to give the Broncos a 14-12 lead.
The Titans hit-back in the 22nd minute through Kevin Campion who turned back the clock with a great display of speed to race away and score in the corner. With Davis converting from the sideline, the Titans extended their lead out to 18-14.
In a see-sawing affair it was the Broncos who scored next with Smith crossing out wide to level the scores up before Terry Matterson took the crowd back to the 80's with a toe-poke conversion to give the visitors a 20-18 half-time lead.
But the Titans started the second-half strongly with a Toopi bust down the left edge resulting in Luke Capewell crossing next to the sticks giving Davis another easy conversion to take a 24-20 lead.
The Broncos responded in spectacular fashion with John Te Reo making a bust up the middle before passing to Prince to score next to the posts. Walker was on and he converted to give the away-side a 26-24 lead.
The Broncos extended their lead in the 39th minute in identical fashion to their previous try with Prince supporting a Te Reo break to score under the posts before Walker added the extras for a 32-24 lead.
The Broncos turned defence into attack to further extend their lead in the 43rd minute with Michaels cleaning up the scraps of a Titans error to race 60 metres down-field to score untouched under the posts. With Walker converting the Broncos shot-out to a 38-24 lead with 16 minutes remaining.
The Broncos extended their lead with an intercept try to Shaun Berrigan who outpaced Peter Gill to score out wide. With Walker off the field, kicking duties fell to Alwyn Simpson who added the extras to give the Broncos a 44-24 lead.
The Titans hit-back in the 56th minute with Campbell scoring his second-try of the afternoon before Kevin Gordon converting to reduce the deficit back to 44-30.
The last try of the match went to Chris Walker's daughter, Harper who raced 80 metres down-field to score a converted try for the Titans to reduce the full-time deficit back to 44-36.
Deadly Choices Broncos 44 (S Prince 2, S Michaels 2, D Vidot, B Thorn, D Smith, S Berrigan tries; C Walker 4, T Matterson 1, A Simpson 1 goals) defeated Deadly Choices Titans 36 (P Campbell 2, C Toopi, K Campion, L Capewell, H Walker tries; B Davis 3, K Gordon 1, H Walker 1 goals)