Steve Matai is held back by Fuifui Moimoi as a fight breaks out: NRL Round 17, Manly Warringah Sea Eagles v Parramatta Eels, Brookvale Oval, Monday 8th July 2013. Photo: Copyright © Renee McKay/Action Photographics

NRL Match preview: Sea Eagles v Eels

Who could forget the last time these two sides locked horns at Brookvale Oval.

The 50-10 score line, the Sea Eagles’ biggest winning margin over Parramatta since 1996, wasn’t even the chief talking point to come out of the match.

Instead, a 73rd minute brawl saw Parramatta’s Mitchell Allgood sin binned for his punch on Sea Eagles centre Steve Matai in what Manly coach Geoff Toovey labelled as “foul play.”

A furious Matai had to be restrained by his teammates as the match reached its flashpoint

Now, eight months on, and the pair are set to meet again at the ground where it all erupted.

After an impressive first outing against the Warriors, the Eels were rather disappointing last week, thumped by 50 points for the second time in the space of 12 months against the reigning Premiers.

Coach Brad Arthur will look to repair their brittle defence as they come up against the attacking prowess of the Sea Eagles.

Like their opposition on Sunday, Manly Warringah have opened their 2014 season with one win and one loss.

After giving up a 20-point advantage against the Storm, the Sea Eagles, without the Stewart brothers, defied the odds last Friday night to record a historical win against title favourites, South Sydney.

The Sea Eagles head into Sunday’s clash having claimed 11 of their past 14 matches, including the past three, against last year’s wooden spooners.

Sea Eagles coach Geoff Toovey has named an unchanged line-up, with lock forward Glenn Stewart set to make his return after missing last week with a groin strain.

The Eels will be without forward Darcy Lussick who will miss up to a month of footy after pleading guilty to a high shot on Roosters front-rower Jared Waerea-Hargreaves.

Nathan Peats returns to the side after serving his one match suspension for an off-field incident. 

MANLY WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES v PARRAMATTA EELS

Round 3 - 2014 NRL Premiership

Sunday 23rd March, 2014 – Brookvale Oval

NRL Kick-Off 3:00pm

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