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Marshall, Hunt fire Broncos to NRL victory

NZN 24/06/2017 Matt Coughlan

A resurgent Benji Marshall and rejuvenated Ben Hunt are set to deliver Brisbane some enviable depth in the halves for the remainder of the NRL season.

Both were superb in the Broncos' 30-20 victory over Canberra on Saturday night, setting up a tantalising clash with league leaders Melbourne in Brisbane next week.

Marshall, 32, had a tough start to his time in Queensland, with form and injury preventing him making an impact.

But he wound back the clock with a sterling performance against the Raiders, having a hand in three tries and troubling their line throughout.

"It was nice to see Benji being Benji," Bennett said.

"He's had three or four years of probably not being that player that he was.

"He hadn't lost the ability, just probably lost the enthusiasm."

The pair's combination came about through necessity rather than design with Anthony Milford's shoulder injury prompting Hunt's recall from reserve grade after one match for Ipswich.

While he started from the bench, Bennett hooked starting halfback Kodi Nikorima late in the second half, paving the way for the St George Illawarra-bound star to make an impression.

Bennett said he told Nikorima he needed to take more control of the game.

"We were losing our way there in that first half in the last 15-20 minutes," Bennett said.

"He's a young halfback and he'll get better for that.

"I intended to put him back in the second half but the way game was going it just didn't really work out."

In the lead up to their clash with the Raiders, Bennett said he wasn't overly impressed with Hunt's game in reserve grade.

But he couldn't say the same about his performance at GIO Stadium, with his second-half effort propelling the Broncos to an impressive win without Darius Boyd, Korbin Sims and Milford.

"I don't think anyone's disappointed with the way Ben played," Bennett said.

"As I said when I sent him back to the state league, we need Ben, we need him to be at his best though. We don't need Ben's second best.

While Milford is expected to miss six weeks, his return could present Bennett with the welcome problem of having four quality halves in the lead up to the finals.

But he isn't considering the prospect of having all in action, saying the line-up is a week by week proposition.

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