DCE and Stewart star in big Manly win

In the 70s and 80s on cricket pitches across Australia it was caught Marsh, bowled Lillee.


On Sunday at Brookvale Oval it was Cherry-Evans to Stewart.

Just as fast bowler Dennis Lillee and wicketkeeper Rod Marsh decimated sides around the world in their heyday, Manly pair Daly Cherry-Evans and Brett Stewart tore Newcastle apart in their 30-10 NRL win.

The Sea Eagles No.1 and No.7 turned in masterful performances, having a hand in or scoring all of their side’s points.

While it was Manly’s second win in a row, they remain anchored to the bottom of the table.

Manly coach Geoff Toovey was happy with the win but also aware the game could have gone another way had luck been on Newcastle’s side.

“I can say we’re on a roll now,” Toovey said with a wry grin.

“We had a few decisions from the football gods go our way today.

“I think they had five tries that were disallowed but we got a victory today.”

Manly got on the board first when Jorge Taufua found himself on the end of some quick hands, then Stewart produced big plays at both ends of the field.

First, on the back of a Cherry-Evans break, Stewart scooped up Peta Hiku’s grubber to score his 150th career try. Minutes later he came up with a desperate try-saving tackle on James McManus.

When McManus made a mess of a Jamie Lyon kick, handing over possession in prime field position, Cherry-Evans sent Ligi Sao over as the home side went into the break up 18-0.

Newcastle struck first in the second half through McManus, however most of the second stanza was the DCE and Stewart show.

Stewart got his second on the back of a Cherry-Evans 40/20 in the 56th minute, and nine minutes later Stewart turned provider, throwing the last pass as Cherry-Evans crossed.

The Knights had their chances and had several decisions overturned by the video referees.

While they had their fair share of bad luck, the defensive grit that defined their 4-0 start to the year was nowhere to be seen on Sunday as they slumped to five straight losses.

“It is getting frustrating because the last few weeks we’ve seen the same common denominators come up around our defensive resolve,” Newcastle coach Rick Stone said.

“That’s something we did pretty well in the first couple of games but at the moment when we’re under pressure on our own line, that desperation, that decision-making and confidence that was with us earlier in the season isn’t with us.

“Like (Knights captain) Kurt (Gidley) said, it’s a matter or working hard and trying to establish combinations.”