A sensational 89th-minute Josh Reynolds try has ended Manly’s NRL season, with Canterbury defeating the Sea Eagles 20-16 at ANZ Stadium.
Reynolds chased down a Sam Perrett grubber that went between the legs of Manly fullback Tom Trbojevic with just 79 seconds on the clock on Thursday night for the Bulldogs to consolidate their top-four spot in a patchy performance.
Reynolds was controversially earlier been denied what would have been the match-winning try by the bunker in the second minute of extra time.
Reynolds kicked 25m out from Manly’s line and chased through and picked up a Daly Cherry-Evans fumble to crash over.
But video referee Bernard Sutton somehow ruled that Reynolds pushed Cherry-Evans in the back before he picked up the ball.
The loss ends any chance of Manly making the finals this year under first-season coach Trent Barrett.
Manly skipper Jamie Lyon missed an 80th-minute penalty goal, from a Sam Kasiano ruck penalty, that would have kept the visitors’ slim playoff hopes intact.
The Sea Eagles were the better side for much of the contest but missed a number of field-goal attempts in extra time as the Dogs held their composure.
However, Canterbury’s effort will have only given ammunition to those who have written them off as a premiership threat.
Cherry-Evans chipped and chased for himself and outleapt Will Hopoate for the game’s first try in just the fourth minute.
Brett Morris scored his first try from a “Falcon assist” from his brother Josh when the Steeden bounced off his head and Brett pounced in the in-goal.
Brett added his second five minutes later, scything his way past three defenders to score his 130th career try.
The Dogs led 12-6 at the break before Matt Wright crossed two minutes after halftime on the back of a Lyon linebreak.
The Dogs went ahead again in the 56th minute through winger Perrett but his opposite Jorge Taufua answered six minutes later after a Nathan Green tapdown.
Taufua was denied 10 minutes later via a double movement and the game moved into the golden-point period after Lyon’s miss.
Manly centre Dylan Walker suffered a dislocated shoulder in the first half and could have played his last game of the year.