NRL: Broncos come to blows as tensions boil over

Salesi Funaki and Josh McGuire come to blows. The Brisbane Broncos training at Red Hill. Photo / Peter Wallis
Salesi Funaki and Josh McGuire come to blows. The Brisbane Broncos training at Red Hill. Photo / Peter Wallis

NRL finals tensions have boiled over at Red Hill with Brisbane teammates Josh McGuire and Salesi Funaki coming to blows at training on Tuesday.

The incident was sparked by an overzealous tackle from McGuire on Funaki, a reserve-grader who has spent the year playing in the Queensland Cup for Wynnum- Manly.

McGuire had to be dragged away by teammates while other second-string Broncos, including Herman Ese'ese, tried to calm Funaki down.

It came in the middle of an intense session as Brisbane ramps up preparations for Friday night's clash with North Queensland in Townsville, a rematch of last year's grand final.

Backrower Matt Gillett said afterwards there was no bad blood between the pair, describing the scuffle as a sign of how seriously the Broncos take their training.

"I turned my back on that and just walked away," he said.

"Things do get heated at training, that's what it's all about. "They're all good now.

"That's the way Moosey plays, he trains the way he plays.

"It does get a bit firey out there and people react different." The Broncos will head north after their final training session of the week on Thursday.

Meanwhile, Brisbane have re-signed Test second-rower Matt Gillett for four more NRL seasons. Gillett will remain at the Broncos until the end of the 2020 season, when he will be 32.

Gillett re-signed with the club despite big-money offers from Manly and the Warriors."

Matt is a wonderful rugby league player but also a thoroughly decent person," Broncos chief executive Paul White said.

"His efforts for the club on and off the field do not go unnoticed.

"We are really excited Matt has chosen to commit to the Broncos for such a long time.

"He is part of a group of young leaders at our club who are very important to us as we move forward."

Gillett originally joined the Broncos as a teenager in their U20s system, made his NRL debut in the opening round of 2010 and was a State of Origin player two years later.

He has been a fixture in the Australian side since making his debut for the Kangaroos in 2014.The Broncos face premiers North Queensland in Townsville on Friday night in a sudden-death semi-final.


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