A slick performance from full-back Tom Trbojevic has seen the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles record a 32-6 victory over the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs at Central Coast Stadium tonight.
Trbojevic picked up from where he left off against the Sydney Roosters in round two, scoring two tries and having a hand in each of Manly’s other tries.
It was the Sea Eagles’ first game since March 21 following the suspension of the NRL premiership due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The match was a Manly 'home' game with the Sea Eagles happy to play at Central Coast Stadium, a venue Manly has won 12 of 13 home games at in recent seasons.
The Sea Eagles opened the scoring in the third minute when centre Moses Suli found open space down the right flank to send full-back Tom Trbojevic over. It came off a good offload in traffic by second-rower Curtis Sironen.
Winger Reuben Garrick’s conversion attempt hit the upright for a 4-0 lead after five minutes.
Trbojevic grabbed his second try in the 26th minute after running onto a short pass from brother Jake to score. Garrick failed to convert the try for an 8-0 scoreline.
Manly crossed for their third try when Tom Trbojevic put centre Brad Parker into a hole to score out wide. Garrick converted for a 14-0 lead after 37 minutes. The score remained that way to half-time.
The Sea Eagles started the second half strongly and stretched their lead to 18-0 in the 46th minute when winger Jorge Taufua strolled over from a quick catch and pass by Tom Trbojevic.
Three minutes later, Garrick was held up over the line on the opposite side of the field.
The Bulldogs were then forced to soak up plenty of pressure inside their quarter after Manly camped there for some time midway through the second half.
The pressure finally told when second-rower Curtis Sironen crashed through two defenders to score out wide for a 22-0 lead.
Minutes later, an unselfished Tom Trbojevic sent Parker over for his second try when the full-back played his part in a nice play. Garrick converted the try for a 28-0 lead after 65 minutes.
The Bulldogs got on the board in the 71st minute when Jake Averillo swooped on a grubber kick to score. Nick Meaney converted from in front for a 28-6 scoreline.
Garrick then caught the Bulldogs defence napping to score from dummy half for a 32-6 lead with five minutes remaining.
The winning margin could have been far greater for the Sea Eagles but Garrick had an off night with the boot, landing two from seven goals.
The Sea Eagles take on Parramatta Eels at Bankwest Stadium next Saturday night.