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With Daly Cherry-Evans and Shaun Johnson trading clutch plays, the Sea Eagles and Warriors went toe to toe for 90 minutes in a pulsating 22-22 draw at Go Media Stadium on Saturday.

Down 22-14 with two minutes to play the Warriors conjured a try to Dallin Watene-Zelezniak and then drew level through a Johnson penalty goal to send the game to extra-time but neither team could break the deadlock in golden point.

After both sides traded sets in the opening 10 minutes it was Manly who struck first when Tom Trbojevic took the line on from close range and flicked a pass out the back which deflected into the in goal and was grounded by Cherry-Evans who converted the try for a 6-0 lead.

A second mistake by Jackson Ford inside the first 13 minutes then handed the Sea Eagles a chance to go on the attack again and Cherry-Evans earned his side a repeat set with a neat grubber but the Warriors got the short dropout right to regain possession.

Daly Cherry-Evans Try

The Sea Eagles launched a raid down the left side in the 24th minute and Tommy Talau sent a perfectly weighted kick back inside for Cherry-Evans to make it a double.

A bone crunching tackle by Talau and Jake Trbojevic forced an error from Watene-Zelezniak in the set from the kick-off and Manly capitalised with Tom Trbojevic sending a perfect pass over the top for Talau to cruise over untouched. 

The Sea Eagles came up with their first error of the match in the 30th minute when Tom Trbojevic put it down but the danger was averted when brother Ben produced a great cover tackle on Marcelo Montoya.

Harris: It's a bit of a weird feeling

With four minutes to play in the half the home side finally got on the board when Tohu Harris showed his ball-playing skills to put Jazz Tevaga over from close range. Johnson converted to make the score 16-6.

Looking like they would head to the sheds down by 10 the Warriors came up with a huge play on the stroke of half-time when Watene-Zelezniak intercepted a Luke Brooks pass and raced 60 metres to score.

The Sea Eagles needed just four minutes to get back on track in the second half when Ben Trbojevic crossed courtesy of a Cherry-Evans pass and the margin was back to 12.

Warriors kingpin Johnson then came up with some dazzling footwork in the 53rd minute to bamboozle Tom Trbojevic after Mitch Barnett and Te Maire Martin had combined to give him space. Johnson missed a relatively easy conversion and the score remained 22-14.

Tommy Talau Try

With the Warriors mounting pressure a mistake by Roger Tuivasa-Sheck proved costly as Cherry-Evans earned a repeat set with a grubber but again the home side got a result on a short dropout.

The Warriors continued to push for a fourth try but when Johnson sent an attacking kick dead with six minutes to play it seemed to take the air out of the balloon but the halfback put Watene-Zelezniak over in the corner to set up a grandstand finish.

With the clock winding down to zero, Johnson launched a two-point field goal to try and tie the scores and had his legs taken out by Josh Aloiai so the Warriors received a penalty where the ball landed 12 metres out.

Golden point here we come

Johnson landed the penalty goal from in front and the game went to golden point before a mistake by Manly in the 84th minute handed the Warriors a chance to win but Harris spilled the ball in a tackle and the opportunity was lost.

Into the second period of extra-time and Johnson missed a field goal shot from 30 metres out to hand Manly a seven-tackle set and Cherry-Evans a long range field goal shot that came up short and the game ended in a draw.

The drawn result was the first since Manly and Newcastle played out a 32-32 draw in Round 5 in Mudgee last year.

Match Snapshot

  • Warriors bench forward Jazz Tevaga was helped from the field just before half-time with a hamstring injury.
  • Both sides lost their captain's challenge in the first half of the match.
  • Toafofoa Sipley was huge off the bench for the Sea Eagles with 169 run metres and 18 runs in 46 minutes of game time.
  • Manly lost centre Ben Trbojevic to a hamstring injury in the 66th minute.
  • Warriors winger Dallin Watene-Zelezniak has scored 11 tries in his past 10 games at Go Media Stadium. He now has 16 career doubles.

Jazz Tevaga Try

  • Josh Aloiai's opening 21-minute stint for Manly produced 84 metres from eight runs.
  • Taniela Paseka led the way up front for the Sea Eagles with 21 runs for 198 metres.
  • The Sea Eagles defied slippery conditions to complete 37 of 44 sets at 84 per cent.
  • A crowd of 23,076 was on hand at Go Media Stadium.
  • Jake Trbojevic worked himself to a standstill with 49 tackles for Manly.
  • Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad made 337 metres and had eight tackle breaks for the Warriors.
  • Manly hooker Lachlan Croker left the field for a HIA in the first period of golden point.

Cherry-Evans: Our courage and bravery is something to be proud of

Play of the Game 

Sea Eagles skipper Daly Cherry-Evans was in everything early, grabbing a try double and steering his team into great field position with an array of quality kicks. DCE's second try in the 24th minute came after great lead-up work on the left edge by Luke Brooks, Tolu Koula and Tommy Talau, who sent a pinpoint kick back infield for the 311-gamer to touch down.

Daly Cherry-Evans 2nd Try

What they Said 

"I was really proud of how the guys dug in and kept fighting. It's a tough comp so to come away with a point is something we can be proud of but we came here to win, that's life. It's a pretty beaten-up change room to be fair but I was really proud of that effort." - Sea Eagles coach Anthony Seibold

Sea Eagles: Round 6

"At the end of the day I thought a draw was a good result from 16-0 down. The big thing we are talking about in there is why were we 16-0 down and what do we have to fix. We did great to come back. I thought we went about it the right way... in golden point we were super aggressive with our defence and we didn't give them a chance and I'm glad we were the ones throwing more punches at the end than them." - Warriors coach Andrew Webster

Warriors: Round 6

What's Next

The Warriors are away to the Dragons in Round 7 before returning to Auckland in Round 8 to host the Titans.

The Sea Eagles face the Titans on the Gold Coast on Saturday before a rematch with the Eels in Round 8 at 4 Pines Park.

Acknowledgement of Country

The New Zealand Warriors honour the mana of the Indigenous peoples of Aotearoa, Australia and the Pacific. We acknowledge the traditional kaitiaki of the lands, elders past and present, their stories, their traditions, their mamae and their mana motuhake.

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