Date: Saturday April 11th
Venue: Pepper Stadium
Kick-Off: 7:30pm (AEST)
Last Ten Meetings:
1. August 31st 2014, Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 26 – 25 Penrith Panthers
2. September 8th 2013, Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 26 – 38 Penrith Panthers
3. May 27th 2012, Penrith Panthers 22 – 4 Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles
4. April 9th 2012, Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 30 – 0 Penrith Panthers
5. July 24th 2011, Penrith Panthers 8 – 12 Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles
6. April 22nd 2011, Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 22 – 16 Penrith Panthers
7. June 25th 2010, Penrith Panthers 40 – 22 Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles
8. June 13th 2009, Penrith Panthers 6 – 20 Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles
9. March 30th 2009, Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 10 – 12 Penrith Panthers
10. September 6th 2008, Penrith Panthers 16 – 34 Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles
Penrith Panthers: 1 Matt Moylan, 2 Josh Mansour, 3 Waqa Blake, 4 Jamal Idris, 5 Dallin Watene-Zelezniak, 6 Apisai Koroisau, 7 Peter Wallace (captain), 8 Sam McKendry, 9 James Segeyaro, 10 Jeremy Latimore, 11 Sika Manu, 12 Isaah Yeo, 13 Elijah Taylor, Interchange: 14 Tyrone Peachey, 15 Nigel Plum, 16 Reagan Campbell-Gillard, 17 Bryce Cartwright
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles: 1 Brett Stewart, 2 Cheyse Blair, 3 Brayden Wiliame, 4 Peta Hiku, 5 Tom Trbojevic, 6 Kieran Foran, 7 Daly Cherry-Evans, 8 Luke Burgess, 9 Matt Ballin, 10 Willie Mason, 11 Jamie Buhrer, 12 Tom Symonds, 13 Dunamis Lui, Interchange: 14 Jesse Sene-Lefao, 15 Ligi Sao , 16 Justin Horo, 17 Jake Trbojevic
As sides that reached the final stages of the 2014 NRL season, the Panthers and Sea Eagles will battle it out to get one’s season back-on-track at Pepper Stadium this Saturday.
The Sea Eagles have recently lacked direction in their offensive play, struggling to score points, noticeably due to Kieran Foran’s hamstring injury and the announcement of Cherry Evans and Foran’s departure come season-end. However, these events should not break the entire team’s spirits. And after scoring only four points against the Dragons and losing by thirteen points to the Raiders, something has to change if the Manly-side want to reach the finals for the eleventh year in a row.
The Panthers suffered a twenty-point defeat at the hands of the Cowboys on Monday night, continuing the side’s poor start to the season following five-eigth Jamie Soward’s back injury. After leaving the Dragons in 2013, Soward helped propel the Penrith-side to last year’s finals series. Since his injury, Soward’s position in the halves has been occupied by Apisai Koroisau. Part of the South Sydney squad that won last year’s NRL premiership, Koroisau is yet to score any points for the Panthers.
Panthers coach Ivan Cleary has moved Jamal Idris into the centres for Saturday night’s fixture due to Dean Whare’s short-term injury. There will be no changes to the Sea Eagles squad despite pressure on Geoff Toovey to do so.
A key match-up in this clash is between fullback’s Matthew Moylan and Brett Stewart. Moylan is a young-gun in the no.1 jersey and is keen to break into the NSW Origin squad after his role in the Panthers’ finals triumph in 2014. Whereas Stewart is a more widely-known figure in his position and still with a few tricks up his sleeve. Players like Moylan will be keen to test their skills against the likes of those with a few trophies in the cabinet.
Prediction Manly by 2. A gritty win, but a sign that change is to come.