Manly Warringah Sea Eagles have recorded their first win of the season with a 30-8 victory over North Queensland Cowboys in Townsville tonight.
A week of off field drama was pushed aside by Coach Trent Barrett and his players who were committed in defence throughout to shut down the Cowboys after taking a 14-8 lead into half-time.
It was Manly’s first win since round 21 last season and the first victory in Townsville since 2013. It also ended five straight losses to the Cowboys.
The match marked the Sea Eagles club debut of Jackson Hastings and Shaun Lane.
The Sea Eagles opened the scoring when centre Dylan Walker converted a penalty goal from in front of the posts for a 2-0 lead after five minutes.
Cowboys captain Johnathan Thurston converted a penalty goal for a 2-all score after 19 minutes.
Nth Qld hooker Jake Granville scored the first try of the match when he darted over from dummy half. Thurston converted for an 8-2 lead.
Thurston let the Sea Eagles off the hook when he dropped the ball in trying to score in the 31st minute.
The Sea Eagles then went back to back tries within two minutes. The first from a grubber kick from Daly Cherry-Evans that saw the ball sit up nicely for winger Jorge Taufua to score a converted try for an 8-all scoreline after 38 minutes.
The second was a length of the field runaway try to full-back Tom Trbojevic after he put his foot out to stop a Thurston grubber and regathered to outsprint the cover defence to score. Walker converted to give Manly a 14-8 lead at half-time.
A penalty goal to Walker stretched the lead to 16-8 before prop Brenton Lawrence crashed over to score near the posts. Walker converted to give Manly a 22-8 lead after 52 minutes.
Walker extended the lead to 24-8 six minutes later with another penalty goal.
The Sea Eagles were tremendous in defence for the last 30 minutes, constantly denying the Cowboys attack and forcing the home side into errors.
The hard work paid off when Hastings finished off a break by Tom Trbojevic to score behind the posts. Walker converted for a 30-8 scoreline.
It was a victory every Sea Eagles fan should long remember and be proud of.