Manly Sea Eagles Coach Des Hasler is hoping to see an army of Sea Eagles supporters at Lottoland tomorrow night for his side’s first home match against reigning premiers Sydney Roosters.
With Lottoland in superb condition, Hasler wants to see plenty of maroon and white as Manly chase their first win of the season following last week’s opening round 20-6 loss to the Wests Tigers.
“The ground is in tip-top shape so we just need 18,000 to 20,000 tomorrow to fill it. That would be the start to a good evening,’’ Hasler said after the Captain’s Run at Lottoland this morning.
Lottoland was not a happy hunting ground for Manly in 2018 with the Sea Eagles winning just three games at their traditional home, something Captain Daly Cherry-Evans wants to amend this year.
“This is our first opportunity to play in front of our home fans this year. I’m sure they have got a couple of scars from last year with some of the games they had to watch,’’ Cherry-Evans said this week.
“We certainly will want to be improving on last season. We have got a new squad, we have a new coach, and hopefully, we are an improved side. We love for that to show this weekend in front of our home fans.”
The Sea Eagles will be looking to build on the positive signs against the Tigers with Manly turning in a strong defensive display in a match played in heavy conditions.
“Coming out of your own end in wet weather footy is pretty difficult to do. I felt that the amount of pressure we put ourselves under defensively, to keep them scoreless for such a long part of the game, was a real strong point for us,’’ Cherry-Evans added.
“Fatigue got us in the end there and they really rolled over the top of us in that last 15-20 minutes but for a large portion of that game, it was really something to watch and to be proud of as a side.”
Manly go into the match without prop Addin Fonua-Blake after he was suspended for one week following the Tigers match. Fonua-Blake’s presence will be missed up front after the Tongan international made 198 metres from 19 runs as well as 18 hit ups.
The Roosters go in on the back of a 26-16 loss to South Sydney but have won their last two clashes at Lottoland.
Prior to the 2017 victory, the Roosters had suffered 11 straight losses at Manly’s home ground. Overall, the Sea Eagles have won 84 of the 132 matches played at the ground
Manly second-rower Joel Thompson will play his 200th NRL game against the Sydney Roosters.
Thompson won the NRL team’s Players’ Player award last year in just his first season with Manly – the team he grew up supporting, so his milestone match is even more special for the hard-working representative forward.
Match: Sea Eagles v Roosters
Round 2 -
Fullback for Sea Eagles is number 1 Brendan ElliotFullback for Roosters is number 1 James Tedesco
Winger for Sea Eagles is number 2 Jorge TaufuaWinger for Roosters is number 2 Daniel Tupou
Centre for Sea Eagles is number 3 Moses SuliCentre for Roosters is number 12 Mitchell Aubusson
Centre for Sea Eagles is number 4 Brad ParkerCentre for Roosters is number 4 Joseph Manu
Winger for Sea Eagles is number 5 Reuben GarrickWinger for Roosters is number 5 Brett Morris
Five-Eighth for Sea Eagles is number 6 Kane ElgeyFive-Eighth for Roosters is number 3 Latrell Mitchell
Halfback for Sea Eagles is number 7 Daly Cherry-EvansHalfback for Roosters is number 6 Luke Keary
Prop for Sea Eagles is number 8 Toafofoa SipleyProp for Roosters is number 8 Jared Waerea-Hargreaves
Hooker for Sea Eagles is number 9 Apisai KoroisauHooker for Roosters is number 13 Victor Radley
Prop for Sea Eagles is number 10 Martin TaupauProp for Roosters is number 10 Siosiua Taukeiaho
2nd Row for Sea Eagles is number 11 Joel Thompson2nd Row for Roosters is number 11 Boyd Cordner
2nd Row for Sea Eagles is number 12 Curtis Sironen2nd Row for Roosters is number 17 Angus Crichton
Lock for Sea Eagles is number 13 Jake TrbojevicLock for Roosters is number 14 Isaac Liu
Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 14 Manase FainuInterchange for Roosters is number 15 Zane Tetevano
Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 15 Jack GosiewskiInterchange for Roosters is number 16 Lindsay Collins
Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 16 Corey WaddellInterchange for Roosters is number 21 Poasa Faamausili
Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 17 Kelepi TanginoaInterchange for Roosters is number 23 Lachlan Lam