Sea Eagles smash Knights 50-16 - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Sea Eagles smash Knights 50-16

By Todd Balym 10/08/2007 09:34:20 PM Comments (0)

Manly's march towards the NRL finals has continued to gather momentum, with Newcastle proving a minor obstacle in a 50-16 rout at Bluetongue Stadium in Gosford.

The Sea Eagles led 6-0 after as many minutes before three tries in five minutes midway through the first half put Newcastle on the path to their fifth-straight defeat.

Manly led 26-0 at the break and cruised in the second half to claim their sixth successive win with a nine-tries-to-three victory in front of 17,122 fans.

The loss ensures more pressure mounts on under siege Newcastle coach Brian Smith after reports of player disharmony emerged during the week.

The last time Manly put a team to the sword like this was their 56-0 thumping of the Sydney Roosters in round 17 and it resulted in the tri-colours' coach Chris Anderson quitting two days later.

Manly's NSW stars Jamie Lyon and Brett Stewart both finished the game with two tries, but it was veteran Steve Menzies who stole the show to score one try, set up two and land Manly's final conversion.

Menzies crossed for his 164th career try shortly before half-time when he snatched the ball in mid-air from two Newcastle defenders off a Matt Orford hook kick.

He moves level with Terry Lamb into equal third on the all-time list, just one behind Andrew Ettingshausen.

Menzies played five-eighth for most of the contest and proved his durability with a deft grubber for Adam Cuthbertson to score in the 64th minute.

He also threw the final short ball for Stewart to score his first try of the night in the 24th minute.

It was a strong performance from the Sea Eagles but coach Des Hasler won't be pleased with their final 20 minutes when they conceded three soft tries.

Winger James McManus completed a sweeping backline movement in the 60th minute, Brad Tighe pounced on a loose Stewart pass in the 71st and Steve Simpson burrowed across in the 77th minute.

But the Knights final flurry did little to compensate a horror five-minute period just prior to the half hour when Brett Stewart (24th minute), Jack Afamasaga (27th) and Lyon (29th) all crossed the white line.

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