Jeff Dickinson-Fox reviews the campaign which saw Melbourne Storm crowned premiers in 2017.
3 days ago
Fulltime score: Round 6 SEA EAGLES 36 v RAIDERS 14
Whilst Manly played well, Jason Robinson, video ref Tim Mander and the touch judges provided Manly with the impetus to go on and win the game with some of the most one sided decisions I have witnessed in my time following Rugby League. It reminded me of the days of Greg Hartley.
Yes, I am a Raiders fan and I can accept a Raiders loss when we lose fair and square but when you have the officials barracking for the home team, then it becomes an insurmountable task, as the Raiders found out today.
Manly on the day were still the better side and deserved to win the match but it has to be said, the Raiders made far too many errors in the opening fifteen minutes of the second half to have any chance of bridging the deficit they created for themselves.
The Sea Eagles made the Raiders pay for their lack of respect for the football and the contest was effectively over before the 60th minute but a try to Matt Adamson gave the Raiders a sniff and they started finding a lot of gaps in Manly?s defence only for Tyran Smith to knock the ball on cold to snuff out any chance the Raiders had of mounting a comeback. A minute later Scott Donald crossed in the corner to put the result well and truly beyond doubt.
The Raiders must regroup for next weekend?s battle with the Melbourne Storm while the Sea Eagles host the struggling Rabbitohs at home and should be far too strong with Brookvale starting to return to the graveyard days of the early nineties.
RAIDERS 14 Tries: J Smith, Adamson Goals: Schifcofske 3/3
By the clock: 1st min: A few changes to report with Michael Weyman and Craig Frawley both out for the Raiders. Marshall Chalk and Ben Cross come into the side. A beautiful day at Brookvale in front of a very good crowd. Should be a great match.
5th min: Great start from both sides early but no points yet with Manly having the better of the opening exchanges. Some big defence early on as well.
12th min: TRY - Raiders. Jason Smith, the wily veteran kicked a beautiful 40/20 and then crashed over four plays later from dummy half. His experience has been vital in the opening stages of the match. Conversion successful. Raiders 6-0.
19th min: TRY - Manly. Controversial try to Steve Matai after Matt Gafa from Canberra was hit high and lost the ball with Michael Monaghan flicking the loose ball back to Matai to score unchecked under the posts. Conversion successful. 6 all.
27th min: PENALTY GOAL - Raiders. Clinton Schifcofske gives the Raiders a slight edge after slotting a penalty goal. Raiders 8-6.
HALF TIME: An excellent game of footy at Brookvale oval with both sides leaving nothing on the sidelines. There has been a lot of big hits and great defence from both sides but Manly find themselves behind on the scoreline after enjoying the lions share of possession in Raiders territory in the first half. The second half should be a cracker.
41st min: We are underway in the second half and Manly have the breeze at their back. Can they make use of the brezze and come home with a wet sail or will the Raiders solid defence be good enough to hold out the Eagles in the second forty?
42nd min: TRY - Manly. Tyran Smith drops the ball in the opening play of the second half and Manly make them pay with Brett Stewart crossing out wide. Conversion unsuccesful. Manly 10-8.
47th min: TRY - Manly. Another stupid error by the Raiders gifts Manly another four pointer with Brett Stewart getting a double. Conversion successful. Manly 16-8.
53rd min: TRy - Manly. Michael Monaghan makes the Raiders pay for their complete stupidity in the second half. Dropped balls and giving away penalties have given Manly about 90% of possession since the start of the second half. Conversion successful. Manly 22-8.
65th min: No change in the score and Canberra have been their own worst enemies this afternoon, making too many mistakes and giving away far too many penalties to win the game.
66th min: TRY - Raiders. Matt Adamson crosses out wide to give the Raiders a sniff with under fifteen minutes remaining. Conversion successful. Manly 22-14.
70th min: Tyran Smith knocks the ball on again to cost the Raiders any chance of getting back in the match. The Raiders were on the attack and Smith murdered another opportunity.
71st min: TRY - Manly. Tyran Smith's error has definitely cost the Raiders the match as Scott Donald scores in the corner to wrap the game up. Canberra have been their own worst enemy this afternoon. Conversion successful. Manly 28-14.
75th min: TRY - Manly. Sam Harris scores in the corner after what can only be described as some absolutely pathetic officiating from Jason Robinson and his touch judges this afternoon. Disgraceful effort. Conversion unsuccessful. Manly 32-14.
78th min: TRY - Manly. Steve Menzies scores in the corner to rub salt into the gaping Raiders wound. Conversion successful. Manly 36-14.
FULL TIME: Manly have run out convincing winners thanks to a mistake riddled second half from Canberra and Tyran Smith not to mention the disgusting "officiating" from the referees and touch judges with every contentious decision going the way of the home side funnily enough.
----------------------------------------- Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - B Kennedy (Manly) 2 - J Smith (Raiders) 1 - S Menzies (Manly) -----------------------------------------