It’s shaping up to be a Friday night footy blockbuster as the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles tackle the Canberra Raiders at Suncorp Stadium.
Let’s take a look at some of the key facts heading into the Round 23 match.
With three rounds remaining before the finals, the Sea Eagles sit in fifth place on 28 points, just two points behind the fourth-placed Sydney Roosters. Manly has a 64 points better points differential too.
Parramatta sit on 28 points with Manly but are 90 points worse off on points differential to the Sea Eagles.
Canberra sit in ninth place on 20 points.
The Sea Eagles have become the most exciting attacking team in the Telstra Premiership, having won four of their past five matches. Last week, Manly ripped Parramatta apart in a 56-10 domination that saw Des Hasler’s men score 10 tries to two.
Match Highlights: Sea Eagles v Eels
Canberra have won three of their past five matches and go into the game on the back of a 26-16 loss to competition leaders Melbourne.
Talented centre Brad Parker has been rested after suffering concussion in the win over the Eels last week.
Moses Suli has been named in the centres. Suli scored two tries against Parramatta after coming on as 18th man for Parker.
The Raiders have lost captain Jarrod Croker (head knock), hooker Tom Starling (broken jaw) and forward Corey Harawira-Naera (suspended).
Last Time We Met
The Sea Eagles suffered a 30-16 loss to the Raiders in a Thursday match played in front of no crowds at 4 Pines Park in Round 17 last month.
Manly were missing Origin players Tom Trbojevic and Daly Cherry-Evans while hard-working lock Jake Trbojevic and skillful second-rower Josh Schuster were injured.
It was Canberra’s first win on the Northern Beaches since 2016.
The Sea Eagles have won three of the past four matches against the Raiders since Des Hasler returned to the club for the 2019 season.
Two of the three wins were by four points with the third by eight. Ricky Stuart’s Raiders won the last match by 14 points at 4 Pines Park in July.
Suncorp Stadium will be the fourth venue that the clubs have played at outside of their traditional home grounds of Brookvale and Canberra.
- 1990: Canberra 29 d Manly 12, Perth
- 2015: Canberra 29 d Manly 16, Albury
- 2020: Manly 14 d Canberra 6, Campbelltown
60 games: Manly 36, Canberra 22, Drawn 2
Captain and half-back Daly Cherry-Evans will move into fifth place for most first grade games for Manly on Friday night.
Cherry-Evans will play his 256th game for the Sea Eagles after joining Des Hasler on 255 matches in the win over the Eels.
Cliff Lyons holds the record at 309 matches.