Sat 10 May 2014
AAMI Park - Crowd: 13273

Storm sneak home over Sea Eagles

The Melbourne Storm have snuck home to defeat the Sea Eagles 22-19 at AAMI Park in front of 13,273 as they fought back to claim the two premiership points.

Steve Matai looked to open the scoring first up, however the kicking tips from Jamie Lyon went astray with a missed penalty goal.

The video referees controversially overturned the on-field decision to award Peta Hiku his four-pointer with David Williams ruled not to have knocked on. Lots of debate among supporters, however, but the points on the board as Manly led 4-0 after 26 minutes.

Cameron Smith and Matt Ballin had words as Ballin held onto the jersey of Smith as he attempted to play the ball. From the penalty Billy Slater added his name to the try-scrorers sheet courtesy of a beautiful back-line movement featuring Ryan Hoffman. The Storm locked the game at 4-all, 8 minutes before the break.

Jack Littlejohn edged the Sea Eagles ahead by a one point after 40 minutes as he snapped a field goal as the siren sounded for half time.

The Storm fired quickly in the second half with Billy Slater bagging his second try as he performed a 360-degree turn through the Manly defence. Melbourne hit a 10-5, four minutes into the new half.

David Williams left the field for the Sea Eagles in the 48th minute as he copped a swinging arm from Billy Slater. He was subsequently placed on report.

The Sea Eagles looked to have secured victory as they ran in two consecutive tries through Jorge Taufua (56th minute) and Jamie Buhrer (60th minute), however it wasn't to be their night.

Storm five-eighth, Ben Hampton will have a case to answer at the Match Review Committee as he was penalised for a dangerous throw on Tom Symonds in the 65th minute.

Cooper Cronk's kicking game proved the difference as he placed a grubber kick for himself to score in the 70th minute. The final points came as debutant, Kurt Mann flew through the air to take a Cronk's cross field kick to steal victory for the Storm.

The Sea Eagles shattered as they went down 22-19 after leading 19-10 at the 60th minute.

Next week the Storm head north to ANZ Stadium as they clash with South Sydney, meanwhile the Sea Eagles return to Brookvale to host the Newcastle Knights.

Match Details
Melbourne Storm 22 Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 19
Venue: AAMI Park
Crowd: 13273
Halftime Score: Melbourne Storm 4 Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 5

LeagueUnlimited.com Players of the Match:
3 points - Cooper Cronk
2 points - Billy Slater
1 point - Matt Ballin

Tries: Billy Slater (2), Cooper Cronk, Kurt Mann
Field Goals:
Conversions: Billy Slater (1/1), Cameron Smith (2/3)
Penalty Goals:

Tries: Peta Hiku, Brett Stewart, Jorge Taufua, Jamie Buhrer
Field Goals: Jack Littlejohn (1/1)
Conversions: Steve Matai (1/3), Jack Littlejohn (0/1)
Penalty Goals: Steve Matai (0/1)

LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary

LATE MAIL: Melbourne Storm - Kurt Mann will make his first-grade debut coming in for Mahe Fonua (who played NSW Cup today). Meanwhile Dayne Weston returns to the starting 17 replacing forward Mitch Garbutt.

LATE MAIL: Manly Sea Eagles - James Hasson has been ruled out, Tom Symonds comes onto the bench. No changes to the starting side.

Welcome to LeagueUnlimited's LIVE coverage from AAMI Park in Melbourne as we bring you the final Super Saturday game for Round 9. Manly were backed outsiders with suggestions Daly Cherry-Evans would miss this match due to a calf strain sustained in his short stint for the Kangaroos last Friday night. However, DCE will take the field tonight which gives Manly of making it back-to-back wins after they flogged the Raiders last start.

Kick off minutes away as the Sea Eagles exit the sheds here at AAMI Park

1: We are UNDERWAY at AAMI Park as the Storm kick off to get the first half going.

4: End to end stuff so far, controlled sets from both teams. Melbourne with possession as Billy Slater takes a high kick on his 10 metre line.

6: Peta Hiku is put in a dangerous position and Kevin Proctor is penalised as a result. Kick from the Sea Eagles finds the sideline at the junction of the halfway line.

7: Back to back penalised for the Sea Eagles. Ryan Hoffman is penalised for laying in the ruck. Steve Matai will opt for the penalty goal

Penalty goal attempt by Steve Matai unsuccessful.

Steve Matai has a shocker with the kick in place of Jamie Lyon, it's swung away from the uprights and Billy Slater collects the ball in goal. Play on.

8: Jesse Bromwich somehow manages to come up with the ball as Peta Hiku offloaded. Storm on the attack 20m out

9: Quick change of possession again as the ball is loose and Manly dive on it. Penalty follows in the play for a slow release of the ruck. The Sea Eagles attack over the halfway line with a kick for touch.

10: Cooper Cronk stabs a kick downfield inside his 40 metre line, but it's collected by Jorge Taufua.

12: Sisa Waqa knocks an angled grubber kick dead as Steve Matai was flying through. The play came following a great break play from Cherry-Evans and Matt Ballin. Line drop out is with the Sea Eagles for a repeat set

14: Sisa Waqa reached above his head and plucked the ball from the air to defuse the Manly attack. The Storm with possession 10 metres off their own try line after a raid from the Sea Eagles

15: Penalty to the Sea Eagles as Kevin Proctor was ruled to be offside from the kick from Cooper Cronk. Count is 4-0 in favour of Manly. They attack over halfway from the touch finder.

17: Ryan Hoffman couldn't take the catch in goal but luckily Billy Slater swoops in and knocks the loose ball dead. Another line drop out to give the Sea Eagles a repeat set.

18: Josh Starling offloaded in a tackle and the Storm dive on the ball through Tohu Harris. The Storm with possession 30 metres off their own try line.

18: Penalty to the Storm, their first as Steve Matai was ruled not square at marker as he tackled Cameron Smith. A long kick gives the Storm a full set 20 metres out from the Sea Eagles try line.

20: Steve Matai defuses a bomb in goal and a 20 metre tap called as a result. No real threat from the Storm attack in that set.

George Rose makes an unforced error.

George Rose trying to play the ball too quickly in the ruck after a heavily tackle from Anthony Watmough has fumbled the ball

Sisa Waqa makes an unforced error.

Sisa Waqa jumped off the line and knocked down the ball. ZERO TACKLE for the Sea Eagles as they attack 10 metres out from the Storm try line.

24: Jorge Taufua jumped for a kick on last tackle, but the Storm wrap up the ball just short of their try line. Melbourne with possession deep in their red zone.

25: VIDEO REFEREE for the Sea Eagles, we have NO TRY for Peta Hiku as he looked to clean up a knock down from David Williams

Scored by Peta Hiku. Kick to come.

The GREEN LIGHTS are shown by the video referees as no knock on is ruled as David Williams jumped at a DCE cross field kick. Peta Hiku swoops in and cleans up the scraps to be awarded the first points of the game.

Conversion attempt by Steve Matai unsuccessful.

Steve Matai has failed to convert from out wide and the score remains.

28: Craig Bellamy has just stormed out of the Melbourne coach's box. He isn't happy with the video referee decision to award the try to Manly.

29: Penalty to the Storm, Dunamis Lui the one penalised. Cam Smith finds the sideline after Lui crowded the ruck as Rose played the ball. The Storm attack 30 metres out

30: Young Tonumaipea unable to take the wide, floating kick from Cam Smith. Change over for the Sea Eagles 10 metres off their own try line.

31: Kick from Jack Littlejohn aimed for a 40/20 but the ball lands over the sideline, out on the full and the Storm have a full set just 30 metres out.

32: Lui penalised again for a slow play of the ball. The Storm advance 10 metres out from the Manly try line.

32: Matt Ballin is penalised for hanging on too long in the ruck as Cam Smith attempted to play the ball. Time out here as Shayne Hayne has a word to Matt Ballin.

Scored by Billy Slater. Kick to come.

Billy Slater takes a beautiful offload from Ryan Hoffman as he charged into a hole. Wonderful back line play from the Storm to give them their first try

Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith unsuccessful.

Cameron Smith hits the uprights and bounces away from the goals, scores remain level.

David Williams makes an unforced error.

David Williams was low to the ground looking to defuse the kick from Cooper Cronk, unable to take possession and the Storm have the ball deep in the Manly red zone.

38: Cooper Cronk took the Manly defence on with a massive dummy, but DCE holds him up over the try line on the last tackle. Change over the call for the Storm.

39: Kurt Mann cleans up a chip kick on the last tackle for the Storm as the Sea Eagles looked to send their wingers down the sideline.

Sisa Waqa makes an unforced error.

Sisa Waqa unable to play the ball, was tangled up in the ruck with DCE and the mistake comes. Scrum for Manly 20 metres out from the Storm line.

Field goal attempt by Jack Littlejohn successful.

Jack Littlejohn snaps a field goal to give them a one-point lead as the siren sounds.

40: HALF TIME at AAMI Park in Melbourne sees the Sea Eagles take a one point lead into the sheds over the Storm, 5-4.

40: Second half about to get underway here at AAMI Park as the teams return to the field.

42: Jack Littlejohn caught on last tackle for the Sea Eagles, wrapped up 10 metres off the Storm try line following a break in play from Brett Stewart. Storm in possession now.

43: ZERO TACKLE for the Storm as they attack 15 metres out. Billy Slater on the previous play almost away but chased down by Brenton Lawrence.

Scored by Billy Slater. Kick to come.

Billy Slater slipped out of a tackle, did a 360 and bolted into a hole off a Ben Hampton pass across the field. Storm have their second try of the night.

Conversion attempt by Billy Slater successful.

Cameron Smith from next to the right post slots the extras to make the lead 5 points.

47: Brett Stewart with a great catch of the ball under pressure. Followed up by a charge from DCE and David Williams. However we have time off as Williams remains on the turf.

48: David Williams copped a swinging arm across the face from Billy Slater. He is ON REPORT and is penalised as a result.

48: David Williams has come off the field for the Sea Eagles after the power over the trainers. Tom Symonds comes on the field now and will force a shuffle to the backline. Peta Hiku shifts to the wing, Symonds into the centres.

Scored by Brett Stewart. Kick to come.

Brett Stewart took a dive from acting half and stole points under the defence from Ben Hampton. A simple four-pointer gives Manly a chance to take the lead.

Conversion attempt by Jack Littlejohn unsuccessful.

Jack Littlejohn trying his hand at goal kicking and he pushes it to the right of the posts.

Billy Slater makes an unforced error.

Billy Slater looking to take a bomb kick from Cooper Cronk, knocks on under pressure and a change over for the Sea Eagles 10 metres off their own line.

53: Will Chambers concedes another penalty for knocking the ball free in the ruck as Matt Ballin attempted to play the ball. Manly kick for touch and advance to the half way line.

54: VIDEO REFEREE for the Sea Eagles, we have a TRY for Jorge Taufua. Looking at the grounding here as he dived over in the corner.

Scored by Jorge Taufua. Kick to come.

Jorge Taufua gets GREEN LIGHTS as he dived over the sideline for the corner and somehow managed to ground the ball before his made contact with the turf over the line.

Conversion attempt by Steve Matai successful.

Steve Matai from the western sideline of AAMI Park slots the conversion attempt to extend the lead.

Sisa Waqa makes an unforced error.

Sisa Waqa ruled to have knocked on as he jumped for the ball, looked like Stewart may have got a touch first. However, call with the Sea Eagles as they have a scrum feed 20 metres out.

Scored by Jamie Buhrer. Kick to come.

Jamie Buhrer splits the defence from the base of the scrum and darted away from Kevin Proctor and Kurt Mann. A simple run for the line gives Manly a 9 point lead

Conversion attempt by Steve Matai unsuccessful.

Steve Matai hooks the conversion attempt and it's pushed to the left of the posts.

62: The kick across field from Daly Cherry-Evans is allowed to bounce, scrum for the Storm 10 metres off their own try line.

65: Penalty to the Sea Eagles, Ben Hampton is penalised for a lifting tackle on Tom Symonds. He will have an issue with the Match Review Committee.

69: Brett Stewart forced to play at the ball and knocks the ball dead. Line drop out for the Sea Eagles to give the Storm a repeat set.

Scored by Cooper Cronk. Kick to come.

Cooper Cronk puts in a little grubber looking for someone running through but dived in on the loose ball himself and the Storm are in with a chance to steal victory

Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful.

Cameron Smith slots the conversion from out wide of the posts and the score is 3 points the difference.

74: Brett Stewart is trapped in goal as the Storm go the length of the field in the set. Line drop out for the Sea Eagles, Storm get a repeat set

Scored by Kurt Mann. Kick to come.

Kurt Mann has scored on debut as he swooped in off a pin-point kick from Cooper Cronk. Magical fingers to take the cross field catch and slipped between the defence.

Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful.

Cam Smith with the conversion attempt slots the goal to give the Storm a 3 point lead.

77: Shortish kick off from Steve Matai, low along the ground and the Storm have possession 20 metres short of the half way line.

Ben Hampton makes an unforced error.

Ben Hampton took a swipe at the ball and knocked the ball free from Anthony Watmough. Scrum for Manly just shy of the half way line with just over 60 seconds left.

80: We have time off with 1 second left, scrum for the Storm...however, it's all over as Shayne Hayne blows time out. Game over!

80: FULL TIME at AAMI Park in Melbourne as seen the Storm steal victory over the Sea Eagles, 22-19.

3. Cooper Cronk

Cooper Cronk placed a large total of kicks which put the Storm in prime position for a comeback which lead to tries. Kurt Mann's try set up with a brilliant cross field kick.

2. Billy Slater

Good hands and troubled the Manly defence and bagged two tries with good work

1. Matt Ballin

A mass of tackles in the middle, solid performance to work over Cam Smith and get under his skin all night.