Manly Sea Eagles 40
Tries: Peta Hiku (2), Kieran Foran (2), Clinton Gutherson, Brett Stewart, Daly Cherry-Evans.
Goals: Jamie Lyon (6/7)
Tries: Keith Lulia, David Nofoaluma.
Goals: Blake Austin (0/2)
The Manly Sea Eagles extended their home winning streak with a convincing 40-8 victory over the Wests Tigers at Brookvale Oval on Friday night.
With both teams missing regular first-graders, it was the home side whom were the better to adjust and continued their run towards the minor premiership.
It was the Tigers who started stronger and after two minutes it looked as though David Nofoaluma had scored. Referee Shayne Hayne disagreed and without sending it to the video referee, ruled a knock-on. The replays showed that Nofoaluma had in fact scored but the decision stood.
From the resulting set, the Sea Eagles marched up the field and found space from a set play as Brett Stewart passed to Peta Hiku to score the games first try.
Jamie Lyon converted to give Manly an early 6-0 lead.
Three minutes later, Manly and Peta Hiku had scored again. A pass out wide found Hiku who scored in the corner.
Lyon was unsuccessful to keep the score at 10-0.
The Tigers had their chances throughout the first half but Manly were next to score off some flimsy defending. An injury to Pat Richards saw a re-shuffle and 200-game player Dene Halatau was forced into the centres. Late inclusion Clinton Gutherson exposed that to run around him and find Kieran Foran who scored under the posts.
Lyon converted again for a 16-0 lead.
In the last play before half-time, Matt Ballin darted from dummy-half close to the line and turned the ball onto Foran who beat a defender and powered over for his second try of the game next to the posts.
Jamie Lyon had an easy conversion to put the home side up 22-0 at the break.
The second-half started similar to the first with the Tigers ending up with a set close to Manly’s line. However, as was the theme of the night for the away side, handling let them down.
In the 49th minute, Clinton Gutherson was rewarded for his work in the first-half with a try in the corner.
Jamie Lyon was deadly with the boot to extend the scoreline to 28-0.
Ten minutes later, the travelling Tigers fans finally had something to cheer about. After Blake Austin burst through a big gap and was tackled, the ball was spread to the left where Chris Lawrence offloaded to Keith Lulia to score in the corner.
Stand-in goalkicker Blake Austin was unsuccessful with the kick to leave the score at 28-4.
The Tigers went back-to-back in the 69th minute as a set play saw David Nofoaluma finally score a try after being wrongfully denied earlier in the game.
Austin couldn’t convert from out wide but the Tigers reduced the deficit to 28-8.
Late in the game the Tigers began to tire and the home side was able to exploit that.
In the 76th minute, Jamie Buhrer was able to offload to Daly Cherry-Evans who summed up the situation and found Brett Stewart who scored his token Brookvale try.
Jamie Lyon had a relatively easy kick to extend their lead to 34-8.
The home side then saved their best for last. After a chip from Foran found Stewart, he grubbered for Cherry-Evans who kicked twice for himself before planting the ball down for a great team try.
Jamie Lyon converted another try from next to the posts to give Manly the 40-8 victory and the important two points heading into the crunch period of the season.