Manly steals win from Wests Tigers - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Manly steals win from Wests Tigers

By Adrian Proszenko 09/06/2006 09:44:36 PM Comments (0)

Manly fullback Brett Stewart literally snatched victory away from the Wests Tigers with a brilliant late try to seal a 16-12 NRL win at Brookvale Oval.

The Sea Eagles trailed by two points with as many minutes on the clock left when Matt Orford launched a towering bomb 35 metres out from the Tigers line.

Try-scoring machine Stewart, who has scored 24 four-pointers in as many matches at the ground, leapt over Benji Marshall, juggling the ball with his right hand before regaining control to score the match-winner.

It was an incredible piece of athleticism, and provided the killer blow as both teams struggled for the ascendancy in slippery conditions.

While the conditions weren't as bad as last Friday's mudbath at Oki Jubilee Oval - where St George Illawarra prevailed 8-1 over Parramatta - the slippery conditions again limited the attacking opportunities for both teams.

The Sea Eagles opened the scoring half an hour into the match, with winger Chris Hicks crossing the tryline after a clever switch of play involving Orford and Brett Stewart.

The premiers levelled the scores at 6-all just five minutes later, with Anthony Laffranchi scoring a barnstorming solo try.

With seemingly nothing on, the Country back rower broke the first line of defence and then piggy-backed Manly fullback Brett Stewart over the line.

The Tigers started the second half strongly and were rewarded with a 46th minute try to winger Michael Crockett. The former Dragons lower grader dived over in the right-hand corner after accepting a smart ball from centre Dean Collis.

Laffranchi almost bagged a double six minutes later, diving over from dummy half, but referee Shayne Hayne ruled he was held up over the line by Stewart after video referee Bill Harrigan referred the decision back downstairs.

With his team behind and needing inspiration, Sea Eagles captain Ben Kennedy stepped up. After dragging Prince for eight metres on a sojourn to the line, he popped a miraculous ball Stuart who shovelled it off for Steve Matai to score.

And then Stewart's miraculous grab sealed victory for the home side, to the delight of the 11,588 crowd.

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