General Manly expecting tough encounter

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warriors4life_old

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From tvnz.co.nz

Manly is unlikely to find any NRL opponent tougher this year than the resurgent New Zealand Warriors in Auckland on Sunday, Sea Eagles coach Des Hasler says.

While the Warriors play down the impact of their four-point penalty for salary breaches, Hasler reckons it's galvanised a team which won't stay at the bottom of the ladder for much longer.

He said the encounter promised to "probably be be one of our hardest matches this year".

"The Warriors are playing very, very tough and very tight footy," Hasler said.

"They've really worked given the early setback they've had."

The New Zealand side has won two away games in a row to bring it back to zero after dropping the first two matches of the season.

"In their mind, they are playing (to reach) six points this week," Hasler said.

"We expect a very tough, physical match."

The Warriors' winning over Wests Tigers and Newcastle without Benji Marshall and Andrew Johns respectively didn't devalue their victories, the Many mentor said.

The Sea Eagles, too, have run into form in the past two matches, notching up wins against Cronulla and the Roosters as their new-look line-up begins to gel.

Former Melbourne halfback Matt Orford hit his straps against the Roosters last week with a dazzling try and five conversions from as many attempts.

"He's a consummate professional, really getting in there and running the show and steering us down the park," Hasler said.

He said Orford is also a great mentor to five-eighth Travis Burns, a 21-year-old rising star thought to be knocking on Queensland's door for State of Origin selection.

"Travis is really making the most of his opportunities," Hasler said.

"He's a real aggressive, tough little player, Travis, and he's progressing really nicely."

Warriors coach Ivan Cleary may be hoping that, as a unit, the Sea Eagles are not quite there yet.

"They've got a lot of good players but I think probably as a team they're still trying to find their feet," Cleary said.

But he said the speed and quality of their footballers made them unpredictable and therefore dangerous.

Cleary said the more familiar face of Manly captain Ben Kennedy at lock was the Sea Eagles' game breaker.

"A lot of the stuff he does goes a long way to determining a game one way or the other," Cleary said.

"He's someone we're going to have to work overtime to try to contain the best we can."

Both teams go into Sunday's match at Ericsson Stadium virtually unchanged from last week.

That includes Cleary keeping Sione Faumuina on the bench in favour of Jerome Ropati at five-eighth.

Manly won 26-20 in last year's season opener at the ground but lost the sides' last encounter, at Brookvale, 20-22.
 

warriors4life_old

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It will be a tight match I'm predicting, but the Warriors will come through on top.
 

*Kimmy*_old

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All the teams say this ... But i reakon it will be a tough encounter...WARRIORS by 2 :D
 

madbaz_old

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warriors4life said:
From tvnz.co.nz

Manly won 26-20 in last year's season opener at the ground but lost the sides' last encounter, at Brookvale, 20-22.



How could we forget that win at Brookie last year. Stacey Jones scoring the winning try at the death in his last ever game as a Warrior.
 

Warrior_Hot_Stepper_old

Guest
it will be tough alright, the warriors are adapting to be playing tough and close Footy.
 

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