The Panthers' James Maloney puts a big hit on James Tedesco on Sunday afternoon.
The Panthers' James Maloney puts a big hit on James Tedesco on Sunday afternoon.

Maloney reminds NSW selectors as Panthers stun premiers

THE Panthers have scored one of the toughest wins of the season over the premiership favourites, with star half James Maloney leading the way.

In a timely reminder to NSW selectors, the former Blues star racked up three try assists, a 40/20, three tackle breaks and a field goal in the 19-10 win at Panthers Stadium.

Four days after losing Origin I with the Blues, halves partner Nathan Cleary put in one of the gutsiest performances of his season to help seal the win.

Cleary and Blues halves partner Cody Walker copped plenty of criticism following the Blues' 18-14 loss at Suncorp Stadium last Wednesday night, but the young halfback responded by bouncing back for his club.

Maloney, who missed selection for the first game despite helping lead the Blues to victory in 2018, put on a masterclass in a timely remindder coach Brad Fittler before Origin II selections are made next week.

It was the third win in a row for the Panthers, who have struggled to find form and consistency to start the season.

Maloney sealed the win with a field goal in the closing stages.

PENRITH 19 (V Kikau 2 B Naden tries N Cleary 3 goals J Maloney field goal) bt SYDNEY ROOSTERS 10 (V Radley D Tupou tries D Hutchison goal) at Panthers Stadium. Referee: Ben Cummins, Ziggy Przeklasa-Adamski. Crowd: 16,833.

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