It was the NRL win that the Roosters have craved for some time; to get some revenge on cross town rivals Manly – the tri-colours winning 34-12 at the Sydney Football Stadium. The win helping the Roosters towards their goal of a home semi-final and getting them well and truly back on the winning track.
Jumping out of the gates well the Chooks got the ideal start in which they scored 18 points in the opening 12 minutes to run out six tries to two winners and put a major dent in the Sea Eagles’ minor premiership bid. In comparison, the Sea Eagles looked a little down on energy even before a ball was kicked at the SFS today.
The Roosters’ win went some way to making up for consecutive hidings at the hands of Manly, the Sea Eagles having run up 98 unanswered points over their last two clashes.
Despite the loss Manly remain on top of the ladder courtesy of premier Melbourne’s shock loss to the New Zealand Warriors, but they will be desperately hoping some of their injured brigade are back on deck for Friday night’s home game against resurgent Penrith.
The Roosters moved up to third spot.
The victory was all but sewn up in the opening 40 minutes as the home side took a 24-6 lead to the sheds.
Any chance of a Manly comeback was doused after the break, not by the torrential downpour which sent much of the 22,681 fans scurrying, but by Amos Roberts’ stunning second try of the afternoon.
Having pushed off opposite number Brett Stewart in the first half to en route to a 40 metre run to the line after a Steve Menzies fumble, Roberts again showed too much speed and strength for the NSW custodian as he raced 85 metres to make it 28-6 eight minutes after the halftime break.
It was vintage Amos Roberts; sniffing around the ball for any half chances and turning on the afterburners when needed. Such was the quality, Roberts had it over his opposite Brett Stewart in every department.
More positives came for the Roosters in the way their forwards bounced back today; rolling over the ad line as the game wore on and pushing the passes at the right time.
It was a case of anything you can do I can do better as Stewart ran 99 metres after scooping up a Braith Anasta grubber on his own line to score under the posts, but it was all to no avail as a Willie Mason bust from inside his own half led to a Sam Perrett four-pointer in the shadows of fulltime.
The win positions the Roosters nicely for their finals assault, the confidence injection they needed and coach Brad Fittler will be happy with the way some of the tries were scored. Several of the tries were a result of second phase play and went through the hands rather than coming from kicks as has been the case with the Roosters during this NRL season.