Another game, another controversy for the NRL.
South Sydney benefited from two dubious calls to hold out Brisbane and claim a remarkable 28-26 NRL win at Suncorp Stadium on Friday night.
The Rabbitohs locked up the scores at 26-26 when centre Kirisome Auva’a was awarded a contentious try by the video referee in the 73rd minute despite Broncos halfback Ben Hunt appearing to be obstructed by Rabbitohs backrower Chris McQueen.
Then came the call that ensured the Broncos faithful in the 44,122-strong crowd booed the officials off the ground at fulltime.
After charging down Hunt’s attempted field goal, Sam Burgess was then awarded a dubious strip penalty.
Winger Bryson Goodwin attempted a quick tap only to be stripped himself illegally.
Referee Gavin Badger blew the penalty again and South Sydney quickly regained their cool before Adam Reynolds potted over the 78th minute match-winning goal.
Remarkably, a Greg Inglis-inspired South Sydney led Brisbane (both 4-4 records) 14-0 after just 15 minutes only for the hosts to snatch a two-point halftime lead.
Inglis set up hooker Apisai Koroisau (7th minute) and debutant Alex Johnston – replacing winger Nathan Merritt – in the 11th.
Then Inglis swooped on a Ben Barba chip to run 90m and swat away seven defenders to file an early nomination for try of the season.
It could have been worse – the video referee denied centre Dylan Walker a 25th minute try after replays showed backrower Ben Te’o knocked on Reynolds’ grubber in the lead-up.
A minute later Inglis showed he was human when he knocked on a Dale Copley grubber close to his line and Andrew McCullough scored.
Brisbane hit the lead 16-14 when they capitalised on a remarkable 10 straight sets as winger Lachlan Maranta and lock Matt Gillett crossed.
The Broncos were up 22-14 when McCullough burrowed over from dummy half early in the second half but South Sydney hit back through a barnstorming George Burgess to make it 22-20 to the hosts.
Jack Reed pounced on a Hunt grubber but Corey Parker missed the conversion to make it 26-20 to leave the door open for South Sydney.