Superstars Tom Trbojevic and Daly Cherry-Evans dazzled and Reuben Garrick piled on 30 points of his own in Manly's 58-18 demolition of the Dolphins on Friday night.
After suffering a head knock in the Origin opener, Trbojevic received a clearance from the NRL to play in Round 15 and came up trumps with two tries and 201 running metres, while Cherry-Evans called the shots in style and Garrick bagged three tries and nine goals.
The Sea Eagles made a blistering start with Jason Saab crossing in the fourth minute after slick lead-up work from Cherry-Evans and Garrick.
Garrick had a try of his own four minutes later as he left Euan Aitken in his wake and he knocked over the conversion for a 10-0 lead.
A spilled ball by Dolphins youngster Valynce Te Whare then handed Manly the field position to post a third try and it was Trbojevic who delivered with a 35-metre charge to the line.
Turbo opens them up
Hooker Lachlan Croker then grabbed a soft try to make it 16-0 to the rampant Sea Eagles before a double movement ruling against Toafofoa Sipley denied them a fifth of the night.
The Dolphins managed to stem the tide in the 23rd minute when Jamayne Isaako crossed for his 14th try of the season to pull the score back to 22-6 but the Sea Eagles struck again seven minutes later when Garrick completed his double.
Leading by 22 points at the break the Sea Eagles stretched their lead with another razzle dazzle effort in the 46th minute when Cherry-Evans took the odds to a chip kick over the top from deep in his own territory.
The Dolphins hit back with a beauty
The Cherry-Evans kick was gathered by Garrick who found Trbojevic in support and then took a return pass from his fullback before giving it back Turbo for a slashing try.
Come the 51st minute and it was Josh Schuster laying on a try for Tolu Koula with a well weighted chip kick and Manly had raced to a 40-6 lead.
Dolphins flyer Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow then showed his blistering pace to notch his 11th try of the sesason before Koula raced 70 metres for his second of the night and the Sea Eagles closed in on a half century.
With 10 minutes to play Saab became the fourth Sea Eagle to rack up a double courtesy of a Garrick flick pass, who converted the try to take his own tally to 24 points.
Garrick kept the party going in the 75th minute when he crossed for his third try and landed his ninth goal to equal his own club record of 30 points in a match, which he also shares with Matthew Ridge (1996) and Ron Rowles (1954).
Match: Sea Eagles v Dolphins
Round 15 -
Venue: 4 Pines Park, Sydney
- Reuben Garrick has now scored a try in four consecutive games for Manly.
- Dolphins winger Jamayne Isaako has scored six tries in his past four games.
- The Dolphins lost centre Brenko Lee to an ankle injury 14 minutes into the match.
- Tom Trbojevic tuned up for Origin II with two tries, 201 run metres and three tackle busts. He has now scored nine tries in his past eight games at 4 Pines Park.
- The Sea Eagles had 66 per cent of possession in the first half and completed 19 of 23 sets compared to the Dolphins' 11 of 14 sets.
Saab opens the scoring
- The Sea Eagles finished the night with eight line breaks to the Dolphins' two and 31 tackle breaks to 17.
- The Dolphins' discipline let them down as they lost the penalties 8-1.
- Taniela Paseka ran for 191 metres for Manly while Sean Keppie racked up 165 metres.
- Dolphins forward Kenny Bromwich left the field for a HIA in the 63rd minute which he passed.
- The Dolphins' previous biggest loss was 26 points in Round 5.
Another spectacular team try
Play of the Game
In a first half packed with highlights for the Sea Eagles it was Reuben Garrick's in the 31st minute that really brought the house down at 4 Pines Park. Skipper Daly Cherry-Evans and gun No.1 Tom Trbojevic both played their part before hooker Lachlan Croker produced a freakish grubber kick a split second after taking a pass from Turbo. The ball rolled 20 metres into the in goal and sat up perfectly for Garrick to chase through and touch down for Manly's fifth try of the night.
Razzle dazzle rugby league
What they Said
"Our spine has only played four games together this year and we've scored 150 points or something like that when they have played together. We're a much better side when those four guys are playing together but I thought the forwards laid the platform for guys like Tom [Trbojevic] and Chez [Cherry-Evans] to play off the back of. We were really energetic off the ball tonight, particularly in attack. We asked a lot of questions and when we're like that and we're willing to work for each other then we are going to be a dangerous team from an attacking point of view. The next challenge now is to prepare as well and go on and put in a consistent performance with a couple of our guys missing." - Sea Eagles coach Anthony Seibold
Sea Eagles: Round 15
"We've been through so much and we've handled so much so well that I didn't expect we would play that way tonight. I don't think there's a team in the comp that doesn't have a bad game, a bad day, and we had ours tonight. I just hope it's our last one and I'll be doing everything I can to make sure it is our last one. That's the reality of the competition we're in. We do need the bye. We need to regroup right now and the week off will help us do that." - Dolphins coach Wayne Bennett
Dolphins: Round 15
The Sea Eagles renew a great rivalry with the Eels in Round 16 before a massive clash with the Storm the following week.
The Dolphins have a bye in Round 16 and then host the Eels on the Sunshine Coast in Round 17. Felise Kaufusi will be back from suspension and hafback Sean O'Sullivan is also a chance to return from a pectoral injury.