[2023] R1 Panthers v Broncos - Game Day Thread

You might want to ease up on calling other members of this forum ‘bandwagoners’, Mr Walker. That is a bit derogatory. This is a forum where polite commentary and differing points of view should be encouraged. I was one of those members willing to say that I was not impressed with Garner’s contribution so far. I stand by it, and hope to be be proved wrong sooner rather than later. I also suggested that Luke might be given more game time (I note that WWOS drew the same conclusion). As a long time Penrith fan (going to games since 1967, and season ticket holder since 1987) I don’t think much of the implication that I am a ‘bandwagoner’. I bleed black.


Luke Garner certainly wasn’t at the pace of Kikau a year ago. But I wasn’t disappointed with his effort. It was solid. Does it need some work? Yes. But I feel that will come with time. I think we should persist with him in the #11 spot, considering he came from a team who ran dead last with only 4 wins he needs some game time to hit his peak. I remember watching him last year at the Tigers and thought at times he was the only one putting in an effort.

Just fr balance I have included a comparison of Garner and Kikau from Round 1 in subsequent seasons. When you look at them, you can tell that Kikau offload and passes the ball around a lot in a match against a disjointed Manly side. Garner play the ball speed is faster (despite it being slippery), and had better tackle efficiency. I think if you factor int he weather and the opposition, I don’t think those stats are that far off one another.

Luke Garner Viliame Kikau
Round 2023 (R1) 2022 (R1)
Result BRI 12-13 (L) MAN 28-6 (W)
Condition Heavy Rain Clear / Fine
Number #11 #11
Position Second Row Second Row
All Runs 10 14
All Run Metres 97 135
Post Contact Metres 40 61
Line Break Assists 0 1
Try Assists 0 1
Tackle Breaks 1 4
Hit Ups 10 14
Average Play The Ball Speed 3.74s 3.9s
Offloads 0 3
Passes 1 4
Receipts 11 18
Passes To Run Ratio 0.1 0.29
Tackle Efficiency 88.46% 86.96%
Tackles Made 23 20
Missed Tackles 3 3
Penalties 1 0

My concern mostly was the halves. Cleary and Luai seemed off. The last tackle options at times made little to no sense. I wondered if the Broncos strategy to slow the play the ball down hampered them in some way. Things were not falling into place and the play seemed disjointed.

Hopefully the review the tapes over the week and have a real heart to heart over what was working and what wasn’t. I’m not too concerned being Round 1, but they need to rectify it, and in short order.


Pete, my comment was not directed at you or others on here - I wouldn’t question the loyalty or passion of the members of our group. I am just annoyed that we lose one damn game, by a point in extra time, and 10,000+ people, many with an axe to grind it seems, suddenly know how to coach & select the team better than IC & start singling out players for criticism.
We all knew that relacing Api I Kicks was going to be a work in progress. I back IC to get the job done.


Steve, would you concede the reason why Cleary and Luai struggled was because our forwards weren’t bending the other mob back in defence and offence as such Cleary and Luai didn’t have the time to weave their magic. And by time we are talking maybe a second faster.

My view is our forward pack in both games lacked intensity and the punch we have come to expect of them.

Garner cannot be singled out for this as i am talking our entire pack.

Garner on the other hand from my perspective to date he offers no variety or something different.

Martin for example offers venom in defence and can run into holes.

No one can expect a replica of Kikau , although his efforts on the weekend were average

I have conceded someone sees something in Garner which isn’t obvious to me yet…hopefully he shows it soon.