: NRL Rugby League Round 2 - Manly Sea Eagles v Newcastle Knights at Brookvale Oval, Sunday 17th of March 2013. Digital Image by Grant Trouville © Action Photographics

Skipper calls on teammates

Proud Sea Eagles Skipper Brett Stewart has called on his teammates to take extra lead on Saturday night against archrivals Melbourne at AAMI Park.

Stewart will captain his beloved Sea Eagles for only the second time in his career and the first time since 2011, holding onto a perfect record as skipper.

While he remains undefeated as captain, Stewart knows the challenges of facing the Strom in Melbourne and says all 16 teammates will need to step up in the absence of experienced members Kieran Foran, Jamie Lyon and brother Glenn Stewart.

"I’ve had the privilege once before a couple of years ago and I got the win then against the Roosters, so I’m hoping to have the same luck." Stewart said. 

"I think we all need to take on a little more responsibility. We’ve all got to lead from the front on the field and we need to share the responsibility, that’s probably the key to beating Melbourne."

The Sea Eagles will draw confidence from their last trip to Melbourne where they almost pulled off their bravest victory in recent times, only to come away with a draw after a late penalty goal from Storm Hooker Cameron Smith sent the game into golden point.

However, without several key squad members, the Manly fullback knows the task this time around is going to be just as demanding.

"It’s a massive challenge. We’re not shying away from that but it’s one we’re sort of looking forward to. It’s going to be a tough slog tomorrow night, the two teams have got a healthy rivalry and have for a number of years and I think tomorrow night’s game is going to be no different," he said. 

Halfback Daly Cherry-Evans made the trip to Melbourne but remains in some doubt with a calf injury.

"He had a good run this morning so I think Tooves is going to see how he pulls up in the morning and make a decision then," Stewart said. 

"We’re missing a lot of experience this weekend and we need Chez there. He directs us around and he’s probably our go to man, he’s in fine form."