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These two have met in the finals five times with Brisbane winning four of those matches, including the 2000 grand final. The 14-6 victory by Wayne Bennett’s side was impressive in a clinical sort of way but the 2008 qualifying final between the two takes the cake here.
In a pulsating, back and forth match that was highlighted by some breathtaking attack and brutal defence, Brisbane came back from 14-2 down to win 24-16. The highlight of the match was a brilliant try to Denan Kemp that came at the end of a 13-pass movement that went through nine sets of hands.
Brisbane went on to lose in heartbreaking fashion against Melbourne the next week in the final game of Bennett’s first stint as Broncos coach while the Roosters were beaten by the Warriors.
The Brisbane victories in the 1998 and 2015 prelim finals may have been more spectacular and the Roosters win in the 2002 prelim may have had higher stakes but in terms of overall quality this match is the clear winner.
Melbourne have met Parramatta four times in finals football with the Storm winning all four matches and the clear winner for this section is the 2009 grand final, one of the more underrated deciders of the NRL era.
After 68 minutes Melbourne led 22-6 against the fairytale Eels and looked to be cruising before Parramatta fought back, scoring two quick tries first to Joel Reddy and later to Fuifui Moimoi. The Moimoi try is one of the best in grand final history, a death or glory charge to the corner that defied belief as he barrelled towards the line leaving a trail of Storm defenders in his wakes.