Holden Cup Coach Wayne Lambkin was more impressed with the resilience shown by his men rather than the 30 point margin in the win over the Bulldogs last Friday night.
Manly’s defence was strong in the opening 30 minutes with the Bulldogs having several tryscoring opportunities at Belmore Sports Ground.
However the hard work paid off for the Sea Eagles, who scored two tries to lead 12-0 at half-time before recording a comfortable 36-6 victory.
“I’ve been waiting for them to tough out a game. It wasn’t all their own way,’’ Lambkin said.
“It (the win) never looked too much in doubt, but it just took them time to get it done. They stuck pretty solid to what we planned to do. It was just trying to get them back to basics. We have always worked off the back of basics to become a good side and we forgotten about that.
“They showed some good signs of resilience and getting back into the grind.”
The Sea Eagles sit in sixth place on 28 points ahead of this Sunday’s clash against the bottom placed Warriors at Mt Smart Stadium. The team is four points outside of the top four.
Manly then tackle the second placed Penrith – who they beat in round 18 – in the final game of the season at Lottoland on Saturday week.
Lambkin has stressed to his team that their mindset needs to be the same as it was against the lowly Bulldogs.
“The message is don’t read where they are on the competition table,’’ he said.
“Be prepared to play long periods, grind away, and have your fun in the last 20 minutes from all the hard work you have done early in the game.
“It was evident in the win over the Bulldogs. We scored a lot of tries late in the game to put them away.
“We want to win both games to assure ourselves a spot in the eight. The higher up we finish, the better.
“As long as you are winning games, then you can sit back and see where you end up. You don’t want to be relying on other teams losing in round 26 to assure you of your spot.”