Andrew Pelechaty reviews the Friday night Magic Round clash between Manly Warringah and Brisbane at Suncorp Stadium. Here’s how the game went.
Sea Eagles 50
Tries: Tom Trbojevic (14, 60), Sean Keppie (25), Jason Saab (31, 45), Jake Trbojevic (55), Lachlan Croker (58), Josh Schuster (72)
Goals: Reuben Garrick (16, 26, 32, 47, 57, 59, 61, 74)
Tries: Jamayne Isaako (38)
Goals: Jamayne Isaako (39)
Player of the Year PointsEmbed from Getty Images
3 pts – Tom Trbojevic (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)
2 pts – Jason Saab (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)
1 pt – Jake Trbojevic (Manly Warringah Sea Eagles)
MATCH REPORTEmbed from Getty Images
Fresh off four wins from their last five games, Manly Warringah dominated the first half of their Magic Round “home” game at Lang Park.
While they lost Kieran Foran with a suspected broken hand, they rebounded with three tries. Meanwhile, the new crackdown on high tackles/head contact hurt Brisbane, with four players on report in the first half alone, though that was only the beginning.
Everyone’s favourite Hank Scorpio-lookalike Brad Parker was close to scoring Manly’s first try, but was held up by Tyson Gamble.
Tom Trbojevic – who else? – scored Manly’s first try in the 14th minute after a break down the right flank by Jason Saab, with Saab passing inside to Turbo. Rueben Garrick converted to give Manly a 6-0 lead.
Sean Keppie extended Manly’s lead to 12-0 11 minutes later, barging over under the posts.
Saab added a try of his own after his earlier try assist, scoring down the right-hand side as Manly went through the hands. Garrick’s third conversion made it 18-0 after 32 minutes.
Morgan Harper nearly scored Manly’s fourth try, but was held up. Manly got a penalty off the next tackle to extend their lead to 20-0.
Jamayne Isaako gave Brisbane some hope with a try just before halftime, reducing Manly’s lead to 20-6.
HALF-TIME: Manly Warringah Sea Eagles 20 Brisbane Broncos 6Embed from Getty Images
Saab scored his second try (and 10th for 2021) with a magnificent leap off a pinpoint Daly Cherry-Evans kick. Garrick converted for a 26-6 lead.
Gamble was sin-binned after a high tackle on Garrick, and was joined by Jordan Riki for “unnecessary use of the head” less than a minute later, giving Manly an absurd two-man advantage. If nothing else, it showed how farcical this new hardline stance could become if it gets out of control.
To the surprise of no one, Jake Trbojevic then strolled over off a pass from his brother, all but putting the game away: the Trbojevics are proving to be the most lethal brotherly combination since Oasis’ Liam and Noel Gallagher swaggered their way to global domination in the mid-90s.
Manly were in party mode with Lachlan Croker scoring, and the 11-man Broncos didn’t have a hope of holding them out.
Tommy Trbojevic scored his second try (along with two try assists) as Manly’s advantage started getting farcical, with the Sea Eagles scoring 18 points with the two Broncos in the bin.
Manly raised the bat with Josh Schuster’s converted try. It’s the first time they’ve scored 50 points since round two, 2018.
The sin bin count across both games tonight jumped to eight, with Schuster and Lachlan Croker binned in the final minutes. The $64 million question: will the NRL realise they’ve created chaos and start using common sense from now on, or will they feel vindicated and stick to their hardline stance? Time will tell.
Manly entered the top eight with this win, while Brisbane dropped to second last.
FULL-TIME: Manly Warringah Sea Eagles 50 Brisbane Broncos 6
Kieran Foran (Sea Eagles) – broken hand
Match Review Committee
Jordan Riki (Broncos) – Grade 1 Crusher Tackle – Early Guilty Plea 2 match ban, Guilty at Judiciary 3 match ban.
Jordan Riki (Broncos) – Grade 1 Dangerous Contact Neck/Head – Early Guilty Plea $1600 fine, Guilty at Judiciary $2100 fine.
Tevita Pangai Junior (Broncos) – Grade 1 High Tackle Careless – Early Guilty Plea $2150 fine, Guilty at Judiciary $2850 fine.
Tyson Gamble (Broncos) – Grade 1 High Tackle Careless – – Early Guilty Plea $1150 fine, Guilty at Judiciary $1500 fine.