'Fire up': Kevvie Walters explodes in fiery Broncos team talk

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·Sports Reporter
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Kevvie Walters (pictured) gesturing during an angry pre-match team talk with the Broncos.
Kevvie Walters (pictured) was animated and fired up at half-time in the match between the Broncos and Penrith. (Image: Fox Sports)

Under-fire Broncos coach Kevin Walters was animated in the dressing room has let rip at his team before Brisbane went down 20-12 to the Penrith Panthers on Thursday.

The Broncos put in a gritty performance before a Nathan Cleary two-point field goal helped Penrith stage a great escape as Brisbane came within six minutes of an incredible NRL upset.

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Just when Penrith looked spent, Cleary calmly drilled a 42-metre drop goal to break a 12-12 deadlock in the 74th minute before he sealed the 20-12 win with a try three minutes later.

Brisbane had won two of their past 23 games while Penrith, not including the grand final, had won their last 22.

Walters had been looking for a reaction from his team after making the decision to drop Anthony Milford from the halves.

But Walters clearly wanted more after unleashing on his outfit before the match in an animated team talk.

The former Maroons coach was filmed walking around the room in an attempt to fire his troops up for the game.

Fox League's Warren Smith said it was as "animated a coach you will see before kick-off".

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“Kevvie Walters was blowing up deluxe, very upset about something that maybe that happened in the warm-up, he is a coach looking for a response from his team tonight,” Smith added.

While the team-talk gave the Broncos some steam as they took a first-half lead, it wasn't enough to get them over the line against a strong Penrith outfit.

Penrith edge Brisbane thriller

"That was one of the best 80-minute performances I've seen them (Brisbane) play for a long time and we had to reach pretty deep into our kit bag to get that one done," Penrith coach Ivan Cleary said.

"The field goal was a big play ... he's (son Nathan) getting better, the game's slowing down for him a bit in those big moments.

"Not only can he see what to do he's got the execution part right too."

The Broncos had drifted to a historic $14 to win with some bookies ahead of the Suncorp Stadium game.

Walters laughed that off on Wednesday and delivered his rousing pre-game address after dropping Milford for the first time in the playmaker's career.

Matt Burton shakes hands with team mate Brian To'o after a Penrith try.
Matt Burton celebrates with team mate Brian To'o after scoring a try during the round six NRL match between the Brisbane Broncos and the Penrith Panthers at Suncorp Stadium, on April 15, 2021, in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

And they responded accordingly, earning a standing ovation from their rusted-on fans as they went to the sheds up 12-10.

But for all their gusto elsewhere, their flimsy edge was again exposed, first by Kurt Capewell then Matt Burton on either side of the park.

Criticised for an on-field arrogance in their defeat of Canberra last week, players cheekily celebrated Burton's try with civil handshakes.

It was expected they would run away with things in the second half but Penrith could only manage a penalty as the hosts edged closer to victory.

That was until Cleary managed what Brisbane fullback Jamayne Isaako had failed to do in the previous set, the two-pointer the second this season since it's controversial introduction.

Watch 'Mind Games', the new series from Yahoo Sport Australia exploring the often brutal mental toil elite athletes go through in pursuit of greatness:

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