Roberts banned for Broncos semi-final

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Brisbane Broncos will be without James Roberts for Friday's NRL semi-final against North Queensland Cowboys after the centre was banned for kicking out at Ryan Simpkins.

Roberts was charged with 'contrary conduct' after the incident in his side's elimination final victory over Gold Coast Titans.

Although Roberts appeared to use limited force as he kicked Simpkins in the back, in apparent frustration at the Titans forward not rolling away from a tackle, an NRL judiciary panel found him guilty of the charge.

The Broncos are now likely to bring in young winger Jonus Pearson, as they prepare for a re-run of last year's Grand Final, which was dramatically won by the Cowboys.