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No Joy in Manly's First Grand Final

[Extracted from Whiticker 1994, pp 65-66.]

"Souths ascended to the minor premiership with relative ease in 1951, losing only one match during the season to lead the competition by a record 11-point margin. Long odds-on favourites to retain the premiership, Souths reserved their worst performance of the year for the semi-final against St George, losing 38-8 in inglorious fashion. The next week, the Dragons were beaten by a gutsy Manly side in the final, 18-8. The infant Manly club had qualified for its first grand final barely five seasons since entering the League in 1947.

Manly players Roy Bull, Ron Beaumont, Jack Hubbard and Jack Lumsden beefing it up in the lead up to trhe Grand Final. [From Smith 1991, p. 53]

The smallest crowd in grand final history was on hand at the Sports Ground to witness a one-sided game which Souths won 42-14. A highlight of the record win was Test winger John Graves' four tries in the match - the only time this has been achieved in a grand final.
Manly were without former Test star and coach
Wally O'Connell and were captained by hooker Kevin Schubert. Gordon Willoughby played out the match with his leg heavily strapped rather than leave his side further depleted but Manly's hopes of upsetting the defending premiers were shattered in a spectacular display of attacking football by Souths.

[From Smith 1991, p. 53]

Souths led 15-4 at the break and piled on 27 points in the second-half. Tries to Churchill, Mason, Rayner and Cowie added to Graves' record haul of four tries. The Rabbitoh pack held centre stage with Ernie Hammerton giving his teammates a feast of possession. Purcell landed seven goals from nine attempts and was dynamic in attack. Hammerton added another goal."

SOUTHS: C.Churchill, J.Graves, K.WooIfe, M.Atkinson, H.Wells, -N.Spillane, R.Mason, L.Cowie, J.Rayner(c), B.Purcell, D.Donoghue, E.Hammerton, B.Orrock.

MANLY: R.Beaumont, J.Lumsden, W.Simmons, G.Willoughby, R.Rowles, J.Sullivan, K.Arthurson, G.Hunter, J.Herbert, J.Hubbard, F.Brown, K.Schubert(c), R.Bull.

Souths 42 (J.Graves 4, C.Churchill, R.Mason, J.Rayner, L.Cowie tries, B.Purcell 7, E.Hammerton, D.Donoghue goals) defeated
Manly 14 (J.Lumsden 2 tries, R.Rowles 4 goals).

Referee: J.O'Brien.

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