Roosters outlast Manly in physical encounter

NO goal-kicker? No problem. In a match worthy of its top-four billing the Sydney Roosters made hard work of their 18-12 victory over Manly at Allianz Stadium tonight.
Despite scoring four tries to two it wasn't until a Glenn Stewart error in the 80th minute that most of the 16,246 fans could rest easy in the knowledge that their side was back in the top two alongside arch-rivals South Sydney.
The loss leaves Manly sitting in a precarious position on the ladder with Gold Coast, Cronulla and Canterbury breathing down their necks just a point further back.
The visitors suffered a game-day blow just a few hours before kick-off with five-eighth Kieran Foran ruled out with a stomach virus where he was taken to hospital. The Roosters had their own problems at pivot with James Maloney ruled out after suffering a cheekbone injury for New South Wales in the Blues 26-6 loss to Queensland last Wednesday night.
However it was the Roosters who opened the scoring in the sixth minute through right winger Roger Tuivasa-Sheck. Williams was involved after halfback Mitchell Pearce found him sweeping around the back on a second-man play before delivering the pass to Michael Jennings who drew Manly winger David Williams in to send his winger across untouched. Boyd Cordner took over the goalkicking duties from Maloney and it would be the Roosters' achilles heel throughout the match as they increased their score by fours instead of sixes.
A 9th-minute 40/20 kick from Matt Ballin gave the Sea Eagles the field position to set up camp well inside the Roosters half and that would be where they'd stay for the next 20 minutes. The sprinklers at the southern end of the ground could have been turned on such was the dominance of the Eagles at the northern end.
However, as seen earlier in the season the Roosters goal-line defence was impressive and they refused to buckle. At one stage they repelled the Manly side on eight successive occasions. After doing so much tackling for that 20-minute period the Roosters hit back on the counter attack through hooker Jake Friend. The nuggety hooker picked up the ball on the last tackle and took advantage of Anthony Watmough being the only marker, throwing a dummy before slicing through back behind the play-the-ball. Brett Stewart came across in cover but couldn't prevent Friend from sliding over beside the posts.
The second half was only two minutes old when Tuivasa-Sheck and Manly interchange forward James Hasson were involved in a sickening head clash. Hasson speared out of the line to put on a shot before both came together in a collision picked up by the ground microphones. Both players were helped from the field and didn't return.
Jamie Lyon closed the gap to a converted try in the 48th minute with a typical Manly play where both Brett and Glenn Stewart were involved down the right side, allowing Lyon to slide in between Michael Jennings and Daniel Tupou.
Manly increased the intensity following points for the next 5 minutes before Sonny Bill Williams was the architect of a 50-metre Roosters try where he delivered a perfect cut-out pass to Jennings after running the ball on the last. Jennings drew David Williams before sending Tupou down the sideline who in turn passed back to Jennings as Brett Stewart came across in cover.
George Rose set up a tense finish with a 77th minute try alongside the posts after charging onto a Matt Ballin short ball but the Eagles would ultimately fall short.
Next week the Roosters travel to WIN Jubilee on Saturday night while Manly host the Eels next Monday night.

NO goal-kicker? No problem. In a match worthy of its top-four billing the Sydney Roosters made hard work of their 18-12 victory over Manly at Allianz Stadium tonight.

Despite scoring four tries to two it wasn't until a Glenn Stewart error in the 80th minute that most of the 16,246 fans could rest easy in the knowledge that their side was back in the top two alongside arch-rivals South Sydney.

The loss leaves Manly sitting in a precarious position on the ladder with Gold Coast, Cronulla and Canterbury breathing down their necks just a point further back.

The visitors suffered a game-day blow just a few hours before kick-off with five-eighth Kieran Foran ruled out with a stomach virus where he was taken to hospital. The Roosters had their own problems at pivot with James Maloney ruled out after suffering a cheekbone injury for New South Wales in the Blues 26-6 loss to Queensland last Wednesday night.

However it was the Roosters who opened the scoring in the sixth minute through right winger Roger Tuivasa-Sheck. Williams was involved after halfback Mitchell Pearce found him sweeping around the back on a second-man play before delivering the pass to Michael Jennings who drew Manly winger David Williams in to send his winger across untouched. Boyd Cordner took over the goalkicking duties from Maloney and it would be the Roosters' achilles heel throughout the match as they increased their score by fours instead of sixes.

A 9th-minute 40/20 kick from Matt Ballin gave the Sea Eagles the field position to set up camp well inside the Roosters half and that would be where they'd stay for the next 20 minutes. The sprinklers at the southern end of the ground could have been turned on such was the dominance of the Eagles at the northern end.

However, as seen earlier in the season the Roosters goal-line defence was impressive and they refused to buckle. At one stage they repelled the Manly side on eight successive occasions. After doing so much tackling for that 20-minute period the Roosters hit back on the counter attack through hooker Jake Friend. The nuggety hooker picked up the ball on the last tackle and took advantage of Anthony Watmough being the only marker, throwing a dummy before slicing through back behind the play-the-ball. Brett Stewart came across in cover but couldn't prevent Friend from sliding over beside the posts.

The second half was only two minutes old when Tuivasa-Sheck and Manly interchange forward James Hasson were involved in a sickening head clash. Hasson speared out of the line to put on a shot before both came together in a collision picked up by the ground microphones. Both players were helped from the field and didn't return.

Jamie Lyon closed the gap to a converted try in the 48th minute with a typical Manly play where both Brett and Glenn Stewart were involved down the right side, allowing Lyon to slide in between Michael Jennings and Daniel Tupou.

Manly increased the intensity following points for the next 5 minutes before Sonny Bill Williams was the architect of a 50-metre Roosters try where he delivered a perfect cut-out pass to Jennings after running the ball on the last. Jennings drew David Williams before sending Tupou down the sideline who in turn passed back to Jennings as Brett Stewart came across in cover.

George Rose set up a tense finish with a 77th minute try alongside the posts after charging onto a Matt Ballin short ball but the Eagles would ultimately fall short.

Next week the Roosters travel to WIN Jubilee on Saturday night while Manly host the Eels next Monday night.


Match Details
Sydney Roosters 18 Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 12
Venue: Sydney Football Stadium
Crowd: 16246
Halftime Score: Sydney Roosters 8-0

LeagueUnlimited.com Players of the Match:
3 points - Jared Waerea-Hargreaves
2 points - Sonny Bill Williams
1 point - Boyd Cordner

SYDNEY ROOSTERS (18)
Tries: Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Jake Friend, Michael Jennings (2)
Field Goals:
Conversions: Boyd Cordner (0/3), Mitchell Pearce (0/1)
Penalty Goals: Boyd Cordner (1/1)

MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES (12)
Tries: Jamie Lyon, George Rose
Field Goals:
Conversions: Jamie Lyon (2/2)
Penalty Goals:

LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary

Round 16 wraps up tonight from Allianz Stadium in Sydney with the Sydney Roosters tackling the Manly Sea Eagles. Victory for the Roosters will see them jump Melbourne into outright second spot while a win for the Eagles will put some breathing space between themselves and Gold Coast in fifth position. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves returns from suspension following his Round 9 send-off at Brookvale, adding further intrigue to this encounter.
TEAM CHANGES for the Roosters - Sonny Bill Williams replaces James Maloney at five-eighth with Frank Paul Nuuausala to start in the second row. Isaac Liu comes onto the bench.
TEAM CHANGES - Big news for the Sea Eagles with Brett Stewart returning, however Kieran Foran has been ruled out with a stomach virus. Tom Symonds will start the match at five-eighth and Peta Hiku returns to the bench.
In the Holden Cup, the Roosters hold a commanding 22-6 lead over the Eagles with 10 to go. First grade to kickoff at 7.05pm.
Fulltime in the Holden Cup and the Roosters have run out comprehensive 34-6 victors over the Sea Eagles which consolidates their spot in the top four.
Jamie Lyon takes the Eagles out onto Allianz and they head to the southern end of the ground where they will kick off.
1 min: We're underway!
1 min: Pearce kicks on the last tackle straight down the throat of Stewart.
2 min: Ballin kicks out of dummy half and finds touch 10m from the Roosters line. Roosters scrum.
3 min: PENALTY Roosters. Too slow the play the ball.
4 min: Friend grubbers into the in-goal from dummy half and Stewart is tackled. Eagles dropout.
6 min: TRY SYDNEY ROOSTERS
Scored by Roger Tuivasa-Sheck. Conversion attempt by Boyd Cordner unsuccessful.
Tuivasa-Sheck opens the scoring for the Roosters! Lovely hands down the right side puts the winger over in the corner. Williams, Pearce and Minichiello combine to put Kenny-Dowell on the outside of Matai before he passed to Roger who dived over. Cordner can't add the extras from the sideline.
Sydney Roosters 4-0
9 min: Pearce goes to the air but Stewart comes up with a good catch.
9 min: 40/20 MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Matt Ballin kicks a 40/20.
Ballin kicks out of dummy half and despite Minichiello's best efforts he can't stop the ball going in touch. Eagles scrum 10m out.
10 min: PENALTY Eagles. O'Donnell gets tangled up and stops the quick play the ball.
11 min: Sweeping play from the Eagles to the left side and Stewart's pass is knocked on by Tuivasa-Sheck and goes in touch. Manly scrum.
12 min: Cherry-Evans tries to put Matai through on the outside of Kenny-Dowall but the Roosters centre can't get a handle on the ball. Manly scrum.
13 min: Ballin again kicks out of dummy half and puts the ball in the in-goal. Jennings bats it dead. Roosters dropout.
15 min: Ballin again involved out of dummy half. Forces a dropout with a great kick which is forced by Pearce.
15 min: PENALTY Eagles. Watmough fights to get up quick and loses the ball but there was a hand there.
16 min: Cherry-Evans kicks towards the wing of Tuivasa-Sheck who bats the ball backwards but Pearce bats it dead. Roosters dropout.
17 min: Kite comes up with an error and the Roosters remarkably repel the Eagles for 8 successive sets and will feed the scrum.
19 min: Tuivasa-Sheck is wrapped up on the last tackle by Taufua. Manly ball.
19 min: PENALTY Eagles. Roosters offside.
21 min: Cherry-Evans tries to put the ball into the ingoal but Pearce scoops up the ball.
21 min: PENALTY Roosters. The home faithful can be thanked for that with the Eagles caught offside.
22 min: PENALTY Roosters. Cherry-Evans and Watmough ruled to have put O'Donnell in a dangerous position.
23 min: Pearce tries to put the ball in the in-goal but Stewart comes up with a great piece of play.
23 min: PENALTY Eagles. Taufua ruled to have had the ball stolen in a two-man tackle.
24 min: PENALTY Eagles. Lyon tries to get up quick but Jennings prevents that. Eagles on the attack.
25 min: Cherry-Evans kicks along the ground for Stewart but the ball goes dead. Roosters 20m restart.
27 min: TRY SYDNEY ROOSTERS
Scored by Jake Friend. Conversion attempt by Boyd Cordner unsuccessful.
Jake Friend scores a scintillating solo try! Picking the ball up from dummy half, the little hooker took advantage of the one marker, threw a dummy on the outside and darted in behind the play-the-ball before sliding over out wide. Cordner again can't add the extras.
Sydney Roosters 8-0
30 min: PENALTY Roosters. Taufua takes Tuivasa-Sheck's legs out from underneath him while contesting for the ball.
31 min: The Roosters race away downfield through Williams before he bombs a certain try. Stewart did well at the back to hold off for as long as possible before Williams' pass to Jennings was spilt by the centre. Eagles scrum.
35 min: Sonny Bill throws a speculator over the top intended for Tupou who had come inside looking for the ball. Eagles scrum.
36 min: Brett Stewart knocks on with the line wide open! Buhrer tried to pass on the outside but Tupou batted the ball back into the arms of Stewart who put it down. Roosters scrum.
37 min: Aubusson has the ball knocked out by Matai attempting to make the tackle despite replays suggesting the Manly centre had gotten away with one. Eagles scrum.
39 min: Lyon kicks on the last and Minichiello is bundled back into the in-goal. Roosters dropout.
40 min: Brenton Lawrence charges back into the Roosters defence before Mortimer is sandwiched between Lawrence and Liu. Mortimer helped from the field.
40 min: VIDEO REFEREE: Possible Manly try.
40 min: No try. Buhrer knocks on as the siren sounds for halftime after a great try-saving tackle from Aidan Guerra preserves the home side's eight-point lead.
40 min: Halftime at Allianz and the Roosters lead 8-0.
41 min: Second half action underway. Manly with possession.
41 min: Cherry-Evans kicks on the last and Minichiello grabs possession in front of his own sticks.
42 min: Tuivasa-Sheck and Hasson come together and collect each others heads in a sickening collision. Both players in the hands of the trainers.
42 min: Both players assisted from the field with Tuivasa-Sheck rubbery-legged.
42 min: Play restarts with a Manly scrum.
42 min: Cherry-Evans throws a pass into the head of Horo and into the arms of Minichiello.
44 min: Minchiello takes Cherry-Evans bomb well and the Roosters work the ball off their own line.
44 min: PENALTY Roosters. Buhrer not square at marker.
46 min: Cordner tries to reach out and bang the ball down but Watmough comes up with a trysaver. Manly ball.
47 min: Kenny-Dowall has the ball punched out by Watmough and the Eagles have possession 40m from the Roosters line.
48 min: VIDEO REFEREE: Possible Manly try.
48 min: TRY MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Scored by Jamie Lyon. Conversion attempt by Jamie Lyon successful.
Lyon scores out wide for the Eagles, carrying Tupou and Kenny-Dowall over the line after a play involving both Stewart brothers puts the centre across. Lyon adds the extras from the sideline.
Sydney Roosters 8-6
49 min: Injury report from the sheds - Hasson will head to hospital with bleeding behind his eye. Tuivasa-Sheck won't be back due to concussion and a decision hasn't been made on whether Mortimer will return.
49 min: Injury report from the sheds - Hasson will head to hospital with bleeding behind his eye. Tuivasa-Sheck won't be back due to concussion and a decision hasn't been made on whether Mortimer will return.
51 min: Manly muscling up in defence and the Roosters struggling to get off their own line.
52 min: Taufua kicks back inside for Stewart but Minichiello comes up with brilliant hands to scoop up the ball.
53 min: TRY SYDNEY ROOSTERS
Scored by Michael Jennings. Conversion attempt by Mitchell Pearce unsuccessful.
Jennings responds for the Roosters! They ran the ball down the left side with Sonny Bill delivering a great cut-out ball to put Jennings away. He drew the winger to send Tupou down the sideline before he found his centre back on the inside to score. Pearce this time can't convert.
Sydney Roosters 12-6
56 min: Taufua hits the deck after going down the sideline. Tupou can't put him over the sideline.
56 min: Stewart loses possession in a big hit. Roosters back on the attack.
56 min: VIDEO REFEREE: Possible Roosters try.
56 min: No try. JWH is ruled held up.
56 min: Minichiello grubbers into the in-goal before Watmough is bundled into touch. Manly dropout.
58 min: JWH is pulled down by Horo around the collar and loses possession. Manly scrum.
59 min: The video referee has had a look at the tackle and Horo is placed on report and the penalty is awarded.
59 min: SUCCESSFUL PENALTY GOAL SYDNEY ROOSTERS
Penalty goal attempt by Boyd Cordner successful.
Cordner finally adds the two after three previous misses and the home side go out by more than a converted try.
Sydney Roosters 14-6
61 min: Nuuausala tries to offload to Minchiello who puts the ball down. Manly ball.
62 min: Stewart chips over the top but the ball goes into the arms of Minichiello.
63 min: Stewart puts the ball down in the contest with Minichiello after Pearce's bomb.
64 min: VIDEO REFEREE: Possible Roosters try.
64 min: PENALTY Manly. No try. Nuuausala is ruled to have obstructed Kite in attempting to make the tackle on Pearce.
66 min: Scrappy play from the Eagles and the Roosters have possession.
66 min: The natives are getting restless with Brent Kite overreacting to a tap on the head from JWH on Watmough.
66 min: PENALTY Roosters. Kite is ruled to have come in and sparked the melee where no punches were thrown. Roosters on the attack.
67 min: Pearce grubbers on tackle 5 and Stewart picks up the ball in front of his own posts.
68 min: Manly come up with the dropped ball through Buhrer but in back play Michael Jennings is in trouble with what looks an ankle complaint.
69 min: PENALTY Roosters. Two man strip.
70 min: TRY SYDNEY ROOSTERS
Scored by Michael Jennings. Conversion attempt by Boyd Cordner unsuccessful.
Jennings scores out wide to make it very difficult for the Eagles! Pearce found Sonny Bill who took the line on, drew in Williams before passing to Jennings to cross untouched in the corner. Cordner again can't add the extras.
Sydney Roosters 18-6
70 min: PENALTY Roosters. Manly bundle Aubusson into touch after being told to leave the player before Stewart is marched another 10 for back chat.
73 min: Pearce kicks into the legs of Cherry-Evans who dives on the loose ball.
75 min: Scrappy play from the Eagles but the Roosters knock on first. Double knock on, Manly scrum.
76 min: PENALTY Manly. Roosters not square at marker.
76 min: PENALTY Manly. Roosters with hands on the ball.
77 min: TRY MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Scored by George Rose. Conversion attempt by Jamie Lyon successful.
Big Georgey Rose charges onto a flat pass from Ballin and Lyon adds the extras quickly to close the gap to a converted try. Big finish coming up!
Sydney Roosters 18-12
79 min: Cherry-Evans puts up a hail Mary bomb which is taken well by Minichiello.
80 min: Pearce's kick is charged down before Guerra puts boot to ball. Manly on the halfway.
80 min: Stewart puts the ball down in the tackle and the Roosters will hang on.
80 min: Fulltime at Allianz Stadium and the Roosters have hung on to beat Manly 18-12.
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