Manly have scraped home to record a memorable 22-20 NRL win over the Sydney Roosters but it’s come at a cost, with star halfback Daly-Cherry Evans suffering a worrying leg injury.
The Roosters looked headed for their first win of the season at Allianz Stadium on Saturday night when they opened up a 16-8 lead just after halftime, but the Sea Eagles stormed back into it.
Trent Robinson’s side showed real spirit lacking in their first three losses, but tries to Dylan Walker and Jamie Lyon saw the Manly get over the line.
The Sea Eagles were forced to play the final 16 minutes without Cherry-Evans, which came on top of losing luckless utility Jamie Buhrer to a broken thumb midway through the first half.
It was Buhrer’s first game back from a broken jaw suffered at the Auckland Nines.
The Roosters opened up a 10-8 halfitme lead thanks to a first-half double from Shaun Kenny-Dowall, who had a stormer in his 200th game.
Taking advantage of the late withdrawal of Steve Matai due to general soreness, Kenny-Dowall and Blake Ferguson wreaked havoc on the Sea Eagles’ left side.
The Roosters looked to have all the momentum when Ferguson used brute force to get over four minutes after the resumption of play, but the Sea Eagles turned the game on a dime.
Roosters rookie fullback Latrell Mitchell had a horror night, coming up with knock-ons from kicks that directly led to Jorge Taufua’s first-half try and Lyon’s penalty goal, which levelled the scores.
When Lyon crossed in the 58th to make it 22-16, Sea Eagles looked in control, but Cherry-Evans limped off before minutes later Daniel Tupou crossed to get within two.
The Roosters had a chance to snatch a late win however Mitchell was denied a try by the video referee after Mitchell Aubusson was ruled offside in the lead up.