Cordner's ironman effort helps Roosters past Broncos
VICTORIOUS Blues skipper Boyd Cordner emerged as the winner of the NRL's very own Origin Hunger Games in the Roosters' brutal 18-16 defeat of Brisbane.
Nine stars went around again 72 hours after an interstate contest dubbed the fastest most combatants had played in.
In the tensest of tussles, Cordner came out on top with a two-try, 80-minute feat of endurance trumping a Benji Marshall-led Broncos fightback that kept the match alive to its final moments.
It was rough and tumble, ready and willing, with miserable conditions and inevitable fatigue treated with equal disdain.
It ended in the grandstand finish a game such as this deserved, with two Brisbane tries in the final 10 minutes giving Jordan Kahu a 78th minute sideline conversion to tie it up.
But as a chess game of possession and field position broke out, Cordner played one move ahead of the rest.
Twice the NSW and club skipper struck the killer blow.
First he punched through the line and past Origin opponent Matt Gillett for a crucial four-pointer with halftime in the offing.
Then after a 29-minute, second-half arm wrestle, the no-nonsense back-rower led the way once more.
Cordner claimed the rare spoils of a kick-chase he is most always on hand for, pouncing on the Kahu error that proved decisive.