Sea Eagles steal late one to bottom out Knights

Manly Sea Eagles have produced a late fightback with a stellar field goal from Daly Cherry-Evans to win a close contest 15-14 at Brookvale Oval tonight.

For seventy minutes it seemed the industrious effort of the Newcastle side in a trying week for the club was going to end on a bright note. They led Manly 14 points to four with a double to Akuila Uate and a runaway effort from Dane Gagai giving them the advantage. Kurt Gidley had the chance to put the Novacastrians ahead by twelve. 

The hooker missed leaving the door ajar for the Sea Eagles and that is all the 2013 runners up needed. Jorge Taufua scored earlier in the night as Manly created a rare slick backline movement tonight to prove his effort down in Melbourne wasn't a once off and planted the ball inches within the touchline.

His second came from a common theme running through the entire contest - the bomb. Both backlines were under heavy bombardment in the southern end of Brookvale with Jorge Taufua spilling several from Jarrod Mullen in the first half. Akuila Uate took on that role in the second half spilling the bomb that led to both Taufua's tries. 

The second of Taufua's brace though, was a spectacular effort that is becoming the norm from Jorge. The winger watched his opposite number allow the Littlejohn spiral bomb to bounce, went around his opponent to place the ball down with fingertip control. Manly despite having more dropped balls than a teenage formal were in the contest.

Daly Cherry-Evans who was buoyed by his selection on the interchange bench for Queensland for the forthcoming state of origin opening game was off colour for a majority of the contest. His passes along with the rest of the team were hitting the ground and his kicking game was finding the Knights back three on the full.

Newcastle were skillful enough to take advantage of the off colour Sea Eagles with tries either side of half-time to Akuila Uate - one from a quick play the ball from Dane Gagai and the other from an error from Taufua made it 10-nil after 52 minutes. Dane Gagai wrestled the ball free from Steve Matai who shared a running battle throughout to run away with a try and possibly the match. 

The Sea Eagles though weren't going away and the two Taufua tries kept them in the contest, it would be the consistent figure of Jamie Buhrer to even the score. Littlejohn teased a bomb that forced McManus to compete with Peta Hiku for the ball, spilling it forward right into the hands of the utility forward who dived over - 14 a piece with seven minutes to play. 

As is customary in tied games in the final ten minutes - the two sides both had an attempt to put themselves ahead, as Darius Boyd was the unexpected option as the custodian shanked it wide. Jack Littlejohn was wide with his effort as well, only a minute earlier and it looked destined for extra time.

Enter Daly Cherry-Evans. The halfback had an indifferent game until then - he produced a wondrous field goal from 40 metres out from a single step run up to steal a vital victory to keep them on the heels of the competition leaders Canterbury Bankstown going into a bye week. Newcastle were once again close but not close enough forced to lick their wounds once again.


Match Details
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 15 Newcastle Knights 14
Venue: Brookvale Oval
Crowd: 0
Halftime Score: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 0 Newcastle Knights 6

LeagueUnlimited.com Players of the Match:
3 points - Daly Cherry-Evans
2 points - Jorge Taufua
1 point - Jarrod Mullen

MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES (15)
Tries: Jorge Taufua (2), Jamie Buhrer
Field Goals: Jack Littlejohn (0/1), Daly Cherry-Evans (1/1)
Conversions: Steve Matai (1/3)
Penalty Goals:

NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS (14)
Tries: Akuila Uate (2), Dane Gagai
Field Goals: Darius Boyd (0/1)
Conversions: Kurt Gidley (1/2), Tyrone Roberts (0/1)
Penalty Goals: Kurt Gidley (0/1)


LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary

Team sheets are in for tonight's clash:

MAN: A single change for the Sea Eagles, James Hassen is OUT replaced by Tom Symonds on the bench.

NEW: A slew of changes for the Knights due to injuries to Beau Scott and BJ Leilua. James McManus goes into the vacant centre spot with Jake Mamo promoted from Holden Cup once again. In the forwards Chris Houston replaces Scott with Joseph Tapine making a second first grade appearance from the bench.

Welcome to Brookvale for tonight's clash between the undermanned Manly Sea Eagles side still missing Jamie Lyon and Kieran Foran and the underpaid Newcastle side who have plenty of issues off the field to deal with. Can they put those aside tonight and spring an upset on a Manly side who have been in red hot form at Brookvale.

Here come the Newcastle Knights, wearing a pink themed jersey as is the custom on Women in League round taking residence in the northern end of Brookvale. They are followed by Manly to the strains of Eagle Rock who will kick us off tonight after a moment of silence for Reg Gasnier.

1: KICK-OFF! Here we go! Newcastle with first use.

4: UNFORCED ERROR MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Jorge Taufua makes an unforced error.

Taufua looking to get some metres from his own end, spills a simple chest pass.

5: Knights holding a majority of possession in the early part of the game. Penalty here for a strip.

6: UNFORCED ERROR NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Dane Gagai makes an unforced error.

Korbin Sims tried to turn Dane Gagai inside but the centre juggles it and drops the pill.

8: UNFORCED ERROR MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Brett Stewart makes an unforced error.

A sloppy start to this one, Brett Stewart looking to offload as he goes to ground.. spills it.

13: UNFORCED ERROR MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Justin Horo makes an unforced error.

Sea Eagles have stretched the Knights defensive line like the budget of a single income earner here but the ball went to ground and Gagai scooped it up for a counter attack.

14: UNFORCED ERROR MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Peta Hiku makes an unforced error.

Peta Hiku defuses a tempting grubber for the Knights, knocking it down to give Newcastle a scrum restart.

14: PENALTY Newcastle - hand on the ball here. Gidley taps and goes.

15: VIDEO REFEREE: Uate with a sneaking dart to plant it down.. checking grounding.

15: TRY NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Scored by Akuila Uate. Kick to come.

GREEN LIGHTS..TRY! Uate got it down there. A quick play the ball from Gagai gave the flying winger enough space to catch the markers out and slam it down for the first try.

15: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Conversion attempt by Kurt Gidley successful.

Kurt Gidley with his first goal kicking assignment of the night, fades it between the sticks.

17: PENALTY Manly - Buhrer was taken on suspicion there.

19: UNFORCED ERROR MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Justin Horo makes an unforced error.

Brett Stewart went with the first time ball to Justin Horo who flicked it back inside in good faith but the pass wasn't on point.

20: Knights inviting the Sea Eagles into their territory like an overly enthusiastic neighbour with these errors.

22: The ball bounced more than a cheque from Nathan Tinkler on the last tackle kick from Cherry-Evans but it was knocked on by Peta Hiku.

23: PENALTY Sea Eagles - More invitations and piggybacks from the Novocastrians.

27: Anthony Watmough showing his ball playing skills putting David Williams into a gap for a 50 metre gain. On last, Cherry-Evans chips a kick that traps Uate in-goal.

28: PENALTY Sea Eagles - Knights were more offside than the electorate after Hockey's budget announcement. Manly start the set ten metres out.

29: UNFORCED ERROR MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Jamie Buhrer makes an unforced error.

Knights defense remains stubborn as Manly are fumbling too often.

33: A rugby league ball can bounce some wicked ways but the golden rule is don't let it bounce. Brett Stewart and Jorge Taufua let it bounce and were forced to clear it over the dead ball line from the onrushing Uate.

40: It has been resiliant from the Knights in this first half.. they have repelled a few dangerous moments from the Sea Eagles. They have deserved their lead at HALFTIME.

40: After a massive spray from Geoff Toovey the Manly Sea Eagles are back onto the field possibly with ringing in their ears. Newcastle will be looking to continue the defensive effort from the first half. Good stat from the broadcasters - Manly have lost all ten games they have trailed at the break here at Brookvale.

40: We're underway again, as Newcastle kick it into the sparkling night sky in Sydney.

42: UNFORCED ERROR MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Daly Cherry-Evans makes an unforced error.

Ruh-Roh! Someone wake up the Sea Eagles! Cherry Evans is scrounging around for the ball, like a drunk down to his loose change. The half much like a drunk spilled it.

45: It hasn't been the greatest start to the second half here from Cherry-Evans, a knock on and now kicked it out on the full.

46: PENALTY Newcastle - Matai called offside. Knights are camped down the Sea Eagles end early on.

47: The pressure mounts on the Sea Eagles.. as Brett Stewart was forced to bat it dead once again. Steve Matai though with a screwball drop-out finds touch.. Manly ball.

48: UNFORCED ERROR MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Jorge Taufua makes an unforced error.

It isn't clicking tonight for the Sea Eagles, Matai poked his nose through and offloaded for Taufua who can't claim it.

50: UNFORCED ERROR NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Jake Mamo makes an unforced error.

Newcastle with some hot potato football here but it breaks down as Mamo couldn't handle the pill.

51: Houston we have a problem! Brett Stewart found space and popped it inside for Steve Matai who slipped allowing Mullen to claim it.

51: VIDEO REFEREE: Robbie Rochow might have somehow scored here.. checking how the ball was displaced.

51: RED LIGHTS..NO TRY! Williams just grounded the ball before it was displaced by McManus and Rochow for the latter to pounce. Dropout it is.

51: Within a minute, we're upstairs again.. VIDEO REFEREE: Uate claiming a brace.. after the kick was spilled.

52: TRY NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Scored by Akuila Uate. Kick to come.

GREEN LIGHTS..TRY! Brookvale is stunned here! The weight of possession got that four pointer. Mullen stabbed the kick through and Taufua tried to claim it and run in a single go spilling it right into the path of Uate. The powerful winger just had to spin and score.

53: UNSUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Conversion attempt by Tyrone Roberts unsuccessful.

Tyrone Roberts misses with his first attempt.

55: UNFORCED ERROR NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Akuila Uate makes an unforced error.

Is there a ghost in the southern end of Brookvale? Uate much like Taufua in the first half is unable to reel in a towering bomb.

57: VIDEO REFEREE: The first signs of a slick attacking movement from the Sea Eagles, Taufua claiming one.

57: TRY MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Scored by Jorge Taufua. Kick to come.

GREEN LIGHTS..TRY! Jorge Taufua with another great put down after the Sea Eagles put together a good attacking move.

57: UNSUCCESSFUL CONVERSION MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Conversion attempt by Steve Matai unsuccessful.

Matai once again has the kicking duties in Lyon's absence but the centre hooks it wide.

64: TRY NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Scored by Dane Gagai. Kick to come.

Just when Manly thought they were through the rough path, they slide back in. Dane Gagai with some strength to wrest the ball free from Steve Matai and run the rest of the way despite the attention of Jack LittleJohn.

65: UNSUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Conversion attempt by Kurt Gidley unsuccessful.

The kicking duties have gone back to Gidley and the hooker is unable to get the ball set in the right position. Once the slight delay is over, Gidley walks in and slams it wide.

68: PENALTY Knights - Korbin Sims is caught high. Gidley points to the sticks.

68: UNSUCCESSFUL PENALTY GOAL NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Penalty goal attempt by Kurt Gidley unsuccessful.

"What the hell is going on?" bellows a bewildered spectator as we have a delay for there being no kicking tee. Gidley after the missing tee is found, puts it wide and it doesn't go dead! Manly rucking it out.

69: VIDEO REFEREE: Jorge Taufua claiming his second now.. checking sideline and grounding.

69: TRY MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Scored by Jorge Taufua. Kick to come.

GREEN LIGHTS..TRY! Littlejohn this time puts up a bomb that Uate lets bounce allowing Taufua to ghost in with finger-tip control gets it down.

70: UNSUCCESSFUL CONVERSION MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Conversion attempt by Steve Matai unsuccessful.

Matai quickly pushes it wide. How considerate.

72: VIDEO REFEREE: Jamie Buhrer has pounced on a pass from James McManus? Checking tackle in the air.

72: TRY MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Scored by Jamie Buhrer. Kick to come.

GREEN LIGHTS..TRY! Jamie Buhrer has been as consistent as the interest rates this season and was Johnny on the spot for that try as McManus spilled it in front of him.

72: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Conversion attempt by Steve Matai successful.

Matai kicks it! It was in front but we're locked up now.

74: Jake Mamo spies open air of the kick return.. he tries to push off Josh Starling but the forward gives him the Tallis treatment taking him over the sideline.

77: UNSUCCESSFUL FIELD GOAL MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Field goal attempt by Jack Littlejohn unsuccessful.

Our first field goal attempt in the shoot-out phase, Littlejohn misses.

79: UNSUCCESSFUL FIELD GOAL NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Field goal attempt by Darius Boyd unsuccessful.

Newcastle go close through Rochow but he's taken. The field goal attempt goes to Darius Boyd who screw it wide.

80: SUCCESSFUL FIELD GOAL MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES
Field goal attempt by Daly Cherry-Evans successful.

Daly Cherry Evans! He was pressured by the defense but off a single step hooks it inside the post! Manly win!

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