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Preview: Sea Eagles v Storm

Melbourne appear certain to carry off this year's minor premiership title, regardless of the result of Friday night's top-of-the-table showdown with Manly at Brookvale Oval.
Preview: Sea Eagles v Storm
by NRL

Melbourne appear certain to carry off this year's minor premiership title, regardless of the result of Friday night's top-of-the-table showdown with Manly at Brookvale Oval.

It would take a thumping victory here and a shock loss by the Storm against the Sydney Roosters in Round 26 to give Manly a shot at first place but that appears an unlikely scenario, considering that the Storm are on a 12-game winning streak and showing few signs of weakness.

At the same time, the Storm may be vulnerable to defeat in this match, especially with shot-calling halfback Cooper Cronk remaining on the sidelines with an ankle injury. Melbourne's virtually unassailable position could also result in a performance of reduced intensity and make Manly's task of winning a 10th consecutive game at Brookvale Oval that much easier.

The Storm will field the same 17 that edged out the Dragons last Friday night while Manly will be boosted by the return of back-rower Jamie Buhrer, who missed his first game of the season last Sunday.

Look for a penalty goal to either side as First Scoring Play and consider a Manly win by 1-12 points.

Best chances for First Tryscorer are Brett Stewart, David Williams or Michael Robertson for Manly or Billy Slater, Anthony Quinn or Dane Nielsen for Melbourne.

Manly v Melbourne
Brookvale Oval
Friday night 7.35pm


Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles
1 Brett Stewart, 2 Michael Robertson, 3 Jamie Lyon [c], 4 Steve Matai, 5 David Williams, 6 Kieran Foran, 7 Daly Cherry-Evans, 8 George Rose, 9 Matt Ballin, 10 Brent Kite, 11 Anthony Watmough, 12 Joe Galuvao, 13 Glenn Stewart. Subs: 14 Darcy Lussick, 15 Jamie Buhrer, 16 Shane Rodney, 17 Tony Williams, 18 Tim Robinson (one to be omitted).

Melbourne Storm
1 Billy Slater, 2 Matt Duffie , 3 Dane Nielsen, 4 Beau Champion , 5 Anthony Quinn, 6 Rory Kostjasyn, 7 Gareth Widdop, 8 Jesse Bromwich, 9 Cameron Smith [c], 10 Bryan Norrie, 11 Adam Blair, 12 Sika Manu, 13 Kevin Proctor. Subs: 14 Ryan Hinchcliffe, 15 Sisa Waqa, 16 Todd Lowrie, 17 Jaiman Lowe.

Prediction - Matthew O'Neill: Sea Eagles by 12

OVERALL:
Total Games: 20
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles wins: 9. [Pts: 340]
Melbourne Storm wins: 11. [Pts: 417]
Draws: 0

Biggest wins:
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles: 40 pts: 2008 NRL Telstra Premiership - Grand Final - [View] Sun: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 40 d. Melbourne Storm 0 [Crowd: 80388]
Melbourne Storm: 30 pts: 2003 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 26 - [View] Sat Sep 6: Storm 40 d. Sea Eagles 10 [Crowd: 10020]

Biggest Crowd: 2007 NRL Telstra Premiership - Grand Final - [View] Sun: Melbourne Storm 34 d. Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 8 [Crowd: 81392]

Last 50 games against each other form line (most recent matches at end of line):
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles: LLLWLWWWLWLLLWLWLWWL
Melbourne Storm: WWWLWLLLWLWWWLWLWLLW

Last 10 games:
2011 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 1 - [View] Sat: Melbourne Storm 18 d. Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 6 [Crowd: 14651]
2010 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 22 - [View] Sat: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 26 d. Melbourne Storm 6 [Crowd: 12550]
2010 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 6 - [View] Mon: Melbourne Storm 16 l. Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 18 [Crowd: 14171]
2009 NRL Telstra Premiership - Finals Week 1 - [View] Fri: Melbourne Storm 40 d. Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 12 [Crowd: 21155]
2009 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 24 - [View] Sun: Melbourne Storm 16 l. Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 20 [Crowd: 12601]
2009 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 8 - [View] Fri: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 8 l. Melbourne Storm 22 [Crowd: 10752]
2008 NRL Telstra Premiership - Grand Final - [View] Sun: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 40 d. Melbourne Storm 0 [Crowd: 80388]
2008 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 22 - [View] Fri: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 10 l. Melbourne Storm 16 [Crowd: 18442]
2008 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 5 - [View] Fri: Melbourne Storm 26 d. Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 4 [Crowd: 13632]
2007 NRL Telstra Premiership - Grand Final - [View] Sun: Melbourne Storm 34 d. Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 8 [Crowd: 81392]

Overall record at Brookvale Oval, Brookvale, Sydney (NSW) Stats:
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles: 593 games, won 416, drawn 14, lost 163.
Last 5 games:
2011 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 24 - [View] Sun: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 27 d. Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs 16
2011 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 22 - [View] Sun: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 36 d. Sydney Roosters 8
2011 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 18 - [View] Sun: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 36 d. South Sydney Rabbitohs 22
2011 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 15 - [View] Mon: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 22 d. Parramatta Eels 18
2011 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 14 - [View] Sat: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 24 d. North Queensland Cowboys 4

Melbourne Storm: 10 games, won 3, drawn 0, lost 7.
Last 5 games:
2010 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 22 - [View] Sat: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 26 d. Melbourne Storm 6
2009 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 8 - [View] Fri: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 8 l. Melbourne Storm 22
2008 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 22 - [View] Fri: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 10 l. Melbourne Storm 16
2007 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 11 - [View] Sat: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 13 d. Melbourne Storm 12
2006 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 11 - [View] Sat: Sea Eagles 34 d. Storm 12

Head to Head at Brookvale Oval, Brookvale, Sydney (NSW) Stats:
Total Games: 9
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles wins: 6. [Pts: 184]
Melbourne Storm wins: 3. [Pts: 147]
Draws: 0

Last 5 games:
2010 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 22 - [View] Sat: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 26 d. Melbourne Storm 6 [Crowd: 12550]
2009 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 8 - [View] Fri: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 8 l. Melbourne Storm 22 [Crowd: 10752]
2008 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 22 - [View] Fri: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 10 l. Melbourne Storm 16 [Crowd: 18442]
2007 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 11 - [View] Sat: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 13 d. Melbourne Storm 12 [Crowd: 18640]
2006 NRL Telstra Premiership - Round 11 - [View] Sat: Sea Eagles 34 d. Storm 12 [Crowd: 9338]

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