- Tristan Sailor puts on a brilliant display
- It showed that it is a class above the reserve grade.
- He organized three tries and scored another.
Tristan Sailor has given Brisbane coach Kevin Walters an NRL selection headache after a brilliant display at fullback to spark a comeback in the 26-16 test victory over Wynnum-Manly.
The 25-year-old son of club legend Wendell Sailor set up two tries and scored one himself at Wynnum’s Kougari Oval to confirm his talent as a creator and finisher.
In Saturday’s other test match, dashing Dolphins center Tesi Niu scored a hat-trick in the 58-6 demolition of CQ Capras in Rockhampton.
While Sailor may not play in the NRL season opener in Las Vegas against the Sydney Roosters, he figures to be a genuine No. 14 option for the Broncos.
Melbourne mentor Craig Bellamy used Ryan Papenhuyzen to great effect at number 14 when he first appeared on the scene and Walters has that option up his sleeve with Sailor.
Tristan Sailor was outstanding for the Broncos on Saturday against Wynnum-Manly
His banana kick to the side of his foot to set Ethan Quai up for a try was pure class. He had earlier set up Bailey Trew with a sublime long ball to showcase his abilities as a true playmaker.
Sailor iced the performance with a spectacular 40-meter burst to score late in the game.
‘Tristan was the difference between both teams. He’s a classy player,” Walters said.
‘There are different ways to get him into the (NRL) team. We’ve talked about that with Tristan.
“I think that utility role off the bench could be an option. Tristan covers many positions. He can really play anywhere, he did himself a lot of favors today.”
Soccer fans were also impressed with what they saw and took to social media after the game.
“Today he is very good, he is in a higher class,” wrote one X user.
“Yes, absolutely criminal, he is not playing in first grade,” another responded.
The Broncos trailed 16-8 with 10 minutes remaining against a gritty Seagulls team.
That’s when Sailor and highly-skilled 17-year-old running back Coby Black put their stamp on the game.
Black delivered a well-weighted grab kick for a try when the Broncos were trailing and showed energy and composure.
Sailor organized two great tries and scored one himself at Wynnum’s Kougari Oval.
Wendell Sailor won four premierships with the Broncos, two State of Origin series with Queensland and one Rugby League World Cup with the Kangaroos.
The story of the afternoon, however, was Sailor, who played four games for the Broncos last year when he excelled at fullback while replacing Reece Walsh.
The former St George Illawarra player has started the season with an emphatic message to his coach and another reminder of the rare talents he possesses.
At Rockhampton it was Niu, having lost eight kilograms in pre-season to improve his mobility, who made an early statement in his pursuit of an outside back position.
‘Tesi was outstanding in that first half. “He showed his class and is putting his name ahead of Wayne (Bennett) for selection,” Dolphins assistant coach Nathan Fien said.
Fien said Niu’s defense was also a highlight, while center Valynce Te Whare and winger Jack Bostock also shined.
‘Jack and Tesi were really good. Even defensively they seemed very strong on the line and comfortable together. “They’ve been working hard in the offseason with their defense,” Fien said.
‘Val played about 60 minutes and looked good when he played football. He still has to continue working on his defense, but I’m sure Wayne will be happy with what he did tonight.”