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Manly highlights tight-knit playing group as the key to NRL grand final run

Discussion in 'Uncategorized' started by ManlyBacker, Oct 2, 2013.

By ManlyBacker on Oct 2, 2013 at 6:30 AM
  1. ManlyBacker

    ManlyBacker Winging it Staff Member

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    Manly five-eighth Kieran Foran says the closeness of the Sea Eagles group is the key to the club defying the trend of the salary cap era to maintain the core of their premiership-winning teams.

    Entering their fourth grand final in seven seasons, the Sea Eagles have developed a dynasty the envy of the league - a run of success built on the back of a squad which has undergone minimal disruption.

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Discussion in 'Uncategorized' started by ManlyBacker, Oct 2, 2013.

    1. ManlyBacker

      ManlyBacker Winging it Staff Member

      11,596
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      Manly five-eighth Kieran Foran says the closeness of the Sea Eagles group is the key to the club defying the trend of the salary cap era to maintain the core of their premiership-winning teams.

      Entering their fourth grand final in seven seasons, the Sea Eagles have developed a dynasty the envy of the league - a run of success built on the back of a squad which has undergone minimal disruption.


      The common perception in the league has been that success breeds change, with rivals picking apart premiership teams piece by piece.

      But of the side that will take on Sydney Roosters in Sunday's grand final, six players - the Stewart brothers Brett and Glenn, centres Steve Matai and Jamie Lyon, back rower Anthony Watmough and departing prop Brent Kite - will all be playing in their fourth grand final for the club.

      Hooker Matt Ballin will be playing his third decider, while only injury prevented David Williams and George Rose having more than one grand final appearance to their name.

      Then there is the youthful halves combination of Foran and Daly Cherry-Evans, who have both spoken about the prospect of forming an alliance in the maroon and white for the next decade.

      It is a temptation Sea Eagles management has so far largely been able to ward off - the likes of Will Hopoate, Tony Williams and a then-budding superstar Jared Waerea-Hargreaves the only departures the club would rather have avoided.

      "I can only put it down to the fact this is such a tight club," Foran said.

      "It's the only club I've ever played at so I don't know any better, but blokes that come here from other clubs say they've never experienced anything like it.

      "Blokes don't want to leave - the only way they leave is if they have to leave - otherwise blokes just want to stay here.

      "We're all best of mates, we love playing with each other."

      Off-season addition Justin Horo, who joined the Sea Eagles from Parramatta, noticed the tightness of the group almost immediately.

      "It took me only a couple of weeks into the preseason (to see it)," he said.

      "Training was really competitive, there was a lot of positive talk."
      Sea Eagles praise off-season recruits

      But while the core group has been the bedrock of Manly's success, coach Geoff Toovey says the impact of his new recruits cannot be underestimated.

      Just as Joe Galuvao did with the 2011 premiership-winning team, the Sea Eagles have brought in a group of NRL cast-offs to solidify the side.

      "You'll see most of the clubs that are successful have that core group of blokes," Toovey said.

      "The big thing for us has been the blokes that have come in this year. Brenton Lawrence has probably been the buy of the year.

      "We lost a few players last year but replaced them with you could say lesser known players - Brenton, Richie Fa'aoso even though he's [broken] his neck, Tommy Symonds came on board, Justin Horo.

      "They've all made a fist of it and are loving it and are an important part of the team."

      AAP http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-10-01/manly-highlights-tighknit-playing-group-as-the-key-to-nrl-grand/4991412?section=sport
       

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