The NYC Newcastle Knights were beaten 52-22 by the Manly Sea Eagles at Brookvale Oval on Sunday afternoon in what was a big blow to the side’s finals hopes.
Now in ninth place on the ladder, the young Knights have a big challenge ahead of them to make it into the eight with five games remaining.
The red and blues got off to a strong start, Tyrone Amey bulldozing his way over the line in the seventh minute near the uprights. Braden Robson converted, and for the next 15 minutes the Knights dominated in possession thanks to some strong work from the forwards.
Manly got themselves back into the game in the 23rd minute though, five-eighth Nicho Hynes chasing down a kick to score beneath the posts untouched. He converted his own try, and soon after the home side was over again when fullback Tom Wright made a break near the halfway line to power through for a try.
The Knights bounced back soon after though, Heath Gibbs finishing off a nice set play in the right corner. Robson wasn’t able to convert though, and three minutes from half time Manly was over again, Tevita Funa receiving an arcing cut-out pass to score in the corner.
It looked as though the Knights would go into half time trailing by eight points, but with seconds left on the clock back rower Sam Stone slipped through a hole in the line to score. Robson converted to make the score 18-16, and the Knights had newfound momentum going into the second period.
It was the home that scored next though, fullback Wright grabbing his second of the afternoon in the 44th minute.
Nine minutes later the Sea Eagles extended their lead thanks to Manase Fanua, the interchange forward weaving his way through the Knights’ defence. Hynes converted to make the score 30-16, and then in the 64th minute winger Funa scored.
With 18 points between the two sides it was looking desperate for the Novocastrians, and a short kick-off from Hayden Herbert paid off when Amey managed to get to it. Soon after Nick Newman scored to further blow out the score, but again Manly had all the answers, Funa scoring several minutes later.
Fanua was over again soon after, and Hynes converted to make the final score 52-22.
Newcastle Knights 22 (T: Amey, Gibbs, Stone, Newman, G: Robson 3/4)
Manly Sea Eagles 52
1. Nick Meaney, 22. Heath Gibbs, 13 Braden Robson, 24. Brayden Musgrove, 5. Matthew Soper-Lawler, 6. Nick Newman, 7. Hayden Herbert, 8. Tyrone Amey, 9. Tom Starling, 10. Jayden Butterfield, 11. Eddy Tuilotolava, 12. Sam Stone, 17. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown. Interchange: 15. Zac Hosking, 16. Cameron King, 19. Nash Birch, 20. Jordan Pinnock.