NRL: Stewart stars as Manly beat Canberra

Brett Stewart of the Sea Eagles breaks the Dragons defence during the round four NRL match. Photo / Getty Images.
Brett Stewart of the Sea Eagles breaks the Dragons defence during the round four NRL match. Photo / Getty Images.

A fine defensive effort from Manly fullback Brett Stewart helped the Sea Eagles to a 18-12 NRL victory over Canberra at Brookvale Oval today.

The Manly fullback won a points decision over one of his rivals for the NSW State of Origin spot, Josh Dugan.

Stewart repelled several attacking raids to deny Canberra with trysaving tackles on Shaun Fensom, Tom Learoyd-Lahrs and Blake Ferguson.

Canberra were gallant in front of just over 15,000 fans but coach David Furner would surely be fuming over what looked to be a touch judge's blunder inside the final 20 minutes.

Trailing 16-12, linesman Steve Carroll somehow missed what looked a blatant knock-on from Manly winger Jorge Taufua about 15 metres out from his own line.

Manly were able to get a repeat set from the ensuing play before they were given a penalty right in front with Jamie Lyon slotting a goal to make it 18-12.

Locked at 6-6 at the break, the second half exploded to life with three tries in 16 minutes with replacement Manly winger Dean Whare scoring his second try out wide to make it 10-6.

Soon after Canberra hit the lead for the first time when Dugan fought his way over from dummy-half to score a converted try to make it 12-10.

But the Brookvale crowd didn't have to wait long for Manly to hit back with Lyon scoring a long-range try after a break on the left edge by his centre partner Steve Matai.

Lyon's conversion from the corner hit the upright and bounced in to make it 16-12.

Canberra did well to go into the sheds locked up at the break with Manly squandering several opportunities.

Manly opened the scoring when Whare dived over in the right corner after receiving a nice cut-out pass from hard-working Glenn Stewart.

The Sea Eagles produced several line breaks but were unable to make the Raiders pay for their defensive lapses.

Canberra hit back on 23 minutes when Josh McCrone popped a short ball to back-rower Josh Papalii, who strolled through a big gap from close-range to score without a hand being laid on him.

-AAP

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