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Match Report - Round 7 2005

Sea Eagles thrash Souths
By 24/4/2005

MANLY has won its eighth straight match at Brookvale Oval in style, thumping South Sydney 48-14 in their NRL clash today.

The Sea Eagles are well behind their record of 20 consecutive wins at "Brookie" set from 1967-70.

But Manly (5-1 record) will take plenty of heart from its nine-tries-to-three effort that locked up back-to-back wins and kept it at the pointy end of the NRL ladder after seven rounds.

It was an impressive effort by Manly without its representative backrower Ben Kennedy, who was rested today following Australia's Test win over New Zealand at Brisbane last Friday night.

The Eagles were also encouraged by the 18,331-strong crowd who packed Brookvale Oval today.

It was well above its season average crowd of 15,521 – its second best ever.

No wonder the Eagles are packing them in – Manly was impressive today as it condemned Souths to their second straight loss.

And it was hardly a happy "homecoming" for Ben Walker who marked his first NRL game in two years against his old club Manly today.

After signing with Souths mid-week, Walker was slotted straight into first grade by coach Shaun McRae to replace injured pivot John Sutton (sternum) – but all to no avail.

Walker last played in the NRL for Manly in 2003 before leaving for England and suffering what was thought to be a career-ending knee injury.

After leading 26-4 at halftime, Manly was ruthless as it piled on another four tries including backrower Steve Menzies' 152nd of his career, placing him on equal fourth with Harold Horder on the all-time list.

Manly held a whopping 26-4 halftime lead after pouring on five tries to one.

The Manly faithful had hardly taken their seats when centre Stephen Matai crossed in the second minute after Souths fullback Roy Bell coughed up the ball.

From there it was one-way traffic as winger Scott Donald (6th), hooker Luke Williamson (16th), forward Brent Kite (34th) and centre Paul Stephenson (39th) piled on the points.

The first half monotony was only broken by individual brilliance from Souths winger Luke MacDougall in the 30th minute.

The Rabbitohs flyer ran off Ashley Harrison down the left sideline, chipped over two defenders, cut through another two Manly players and beat Eagles fullback Brett Stewart to the ball to score.

In another concern for the Rabbitohs, it was revealed today that Souths skipper Bryan Fletcher met with Salford Reds football manager Steve Simms last Thursday.

Manly 48: (Tries: Matai, Donald, Williamson, Kite, Stephenson, Menzies, Stewart, Randall, Witt. Goals: Witt 6/9.)

South Sydney 14: (Tries: L Macdougall, Rigon, Bell. Goals: Willams 1/3.)

Referee: T Mander

Crowd: 18,331.


Brett Stewart
Scott Donald
Steve Mattai
Paul Stephenson
Chris Hicks
Michael Witt
Michael Monaghan
Chad Randall
Anthony Watmough
Steve Menzies
Daniel Heckenberg
Luke Williamson
Brent Kite
Jason King
Kylie Leuluai
Sam Harris
Shayne Dunley