In the upset result of Round 26, the Bulldogs managed one final win for 2010 when they held off the Sea Eagles to win by six at Brookvale Oval on Sunday afternoon.
Despite the loss, Manly have just scraped through to the September semis finishing eighth on the ladder thanks to other results from the final round.
Canterbury on the other hand have finished up for the year, their official end-of-season position 13th on the ladder.
On Sunday Manly got off to a good start with Steve Matai scoring his first of an eventual match double in the seventh minute, but Jamie Lyon missed the conversion and they were only up by four.
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Ten minutes later the visitors opened their account as Ryan Tandy scored for the Doggies after Michael Ennis shot out of dummy-half before passing the ball swiftly to the eventual tryscorer, and with Bryson Goodwin successfully booting the kick through the sticks they stole the lead 6 – 4.
Quick to answer back Ben Farrar scored the Sea Eagles’ second just three minutes later and this time Lyon converted so the see-sawing of the score continued and the home side pushed in front 10 – 6.
The arm-wrestle continued four minutes later as Brad Morrin got over again for the Bulldogs, his first of the season, and another accurate kick from Goodwin had the Dogs up by two again.
It was a thrilling first half for the fans at Brookie, with just four minutes between tries again as Chris Bailey crossed for Manly in the 28th minute and the kick pushed them to the front 16 – 12.
Just when it looked like Manly would lead at halftime, Canterbury’s Andrew Ryan scored their third of the match a minute from the break and another successful conversion had them leading 18 – 16.
Back from the break the Bulldogs flew further in front when Benjamin Barba scored a converted try just two minutes into the second half after a 65m run, increasing the margin to eight points.
Five minutes later the Dogs were at it again with Josh Morris sprinting down the field to score their fifth and final try so the score was 28 – 16 in favour of the visitors.
In a thrilling final 30 minutes, the Sea Eagles were able to get in two more tries of their own through Matai in the 54th minute and then co-skipper Jamie Lyon in the 64th minute, but unable to convert either they still trailed by four points.
Matai’s second try of the night just added fuel to the Dogs fire after the centre was lucky to still be on the field following a nasty late shot he’d just put on Michael Ennis that had forced the Canterbury hooker off the field.
Then a 71st minute penalty awarded to Canterbury was kicked by Goodwin and the Dogs finished off their season with a 30 – 24 win, seeing off retiring captain Brett Kimmorley and departing fullback Luke Patten in style.
In more bad news for the Sea Eagles heading into the finals on the back of a loss, Jason King, Matai and Chris Bailey were all put on report throughout the match and await the results from the judiciary to clear them to play in the semis.
This Sunday the Sea Eagles will play the Dragons in the first week of the finals and if you want to win big off your footy bets don’t go to the TAB. Lock in better odds and enjoy bigger payouts by betting online at Ladbrokes.com.au.