Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by Dee Why Eagle, May 9, 2014.
click here to read the article!
Nuthin much to add.
Matai has to finish his career at Manly - no one else understands and loves him like we do
I told you he had withdrawn from Rep Footy.
Great Story, but the Haters will still hate.
Only had to stop hitting people in the head to make him one of the best.
Will never forget that coat hanger on Gasnier in a Test match. Best high tackle in history.
We are very lucky to have him.
I thought that I would add to the Manly Samoan Feel Good Thread
Jesse continues to impress at every opportunity
ANDREW PRENTICE MANLY DAILY MAY 08, 2014
JESSE Sene-Lefao is beaming at the moment – and with good reason.
He is rapidly establishing himself as a regular first grader with the Sea Eagles and last weekend helped Samoa beat Fiji at Sportingbet Stadium to qualify for the Four Nations later this year.
“It was a real buzz. I am a Mt Druitt boy so I had plenty of family and friends on the hill cheering me on,’’ Sene-Lefao said.
“My church also performed pre-game. That left me feeling very proud. It was our biggest win ever as a Test nation, to be in a position knowing we are playing Australia, New Zealand and England later this year is unbelievable.”
He revealed his time in camp under the coaching of Matt Parish was great fun.
“It was a little different to what we do each day with Manly,’’ the interchange backrower said.
“We trained hard, but also were out in the community and had plenty of laughs, that is the Samoan way.
“I loved being a part of it all, representing your country is the ultimate achievement in my eyes for an athlete.”
Sene-Lefao has made giant strides in 2014, after making just one NRL appearance last season.
“I was sitting behind a few blokes, I just had to be patient and bide my time,’’ the 24-year-old said.
“After Brent (Kite) and George (Rose) left, and Richie Fa’aoso retired, opportunities were always going to pop up.
“I just need to make sure I play my part when I am out there.”
Meanwhile, prop Josh Starling has admitted being run down 23-22 in round one against Melbourne at Brookvale Oval has not been forgotten by the playing group.
“It hasn’t been openly discussed, but I am sure it is at the back of everyone’s head,’’ he said.
“You can’t let big leads like that slip, otherwise they (Storm) will feel they have a mental edge over us.
“We are down a few troops this week, but we have blokes like Jack Littlejohn who have slotted in well.
“If we play 80 minutes this time, not 40, we should be in the game.”
Great story about Skivi, he's in career best form too.
Classic, club legend
All I can say is I what that man brings to our club and his heart is obviously gold.
Thank you for not giving a flying f... about opinions and for just being you Stevie.
Its a Matai lovefest
STEVE Matai, only two years ago, owned the worst judiciary record in rugby league.
He was hitting high. Hitting late.
In the space of only six seasons, receiving a staggering 11 guilty convictions and missing 21 weeks.
“But that’s how I thought I had to play,’’ the Manly centre recalls.
“Thought the only way to get over my opposite number was with sheer aggression.”
No, in one of the more unusual redemption stories this season, The Daily Telegraph can reveal how Manly assassin Matai has completely overhauled a playing style that until last year was constantly placing him in trouble.
Since the start of 2013, Matai has missed only one week — for careless high shot. And this year, his record remains unblemished. A remarkable turnaround for the peninsula boy who, through 2007 to 2012, racked up a staggering 13 charges.
“When I first started here at Manly, it was all about aggression,’’ Matai explains. “I used to think, to get over my opposite man, I had to just get the ball and run hard, try to smash them in defence.
“But I’m a bit wiser now. I know when to call for the ball, when to pass and where to be at different times in the game. Also, what timing is required to put on a shot. And as a result, with the judiciary now I’m going alright.”
Two years ago Matai’s rap sheet included 13 offences — broken down into seven careless high tackles, two reckless high tackles, two dangerous contact charges, one contrary conduct charge and one striking charge.
At Test level, the Kiwi also had another two blemishes next to his name.
Indeed, back then, only Cronulla captain Paul Gallen and Penrith’s Travis Burns came close, with 10 and eight charges respectively over the previous five seasons.
“So it wasn’t good,’’ Matai concedes. “I was getting suspended and it made me feel terrible.
“Teammates would tell me not to worry. They know I play tough and sometimes things happen.
“But still, in my own mind I knew I’d let them down. And that hurt.
“I’ve made a few changes though, matured a bit, which is really helping. I only missed a week last year and, touch wood, haven’t had any dramas yet this season.”
And still Matai remains a dominant force on the left edge. Not only outstanding in defence, but behind only Parramatta flyer Semi Radradra on the tryscorers list, with nine.
“The culture we have here, it’s all about playing tough,’’ Matai continues. “That’s one thing the Stewart brothers, Glenn and Brett, really built along with a few others.
“Taught us how, when you’re back is against the wall, you fight. Go down swinging. It’s a great attribute to have and one we will definitely need against Melbourne this weekend with a few players out.”
The Sea Eagles face Melbourne at AAMI Park on Saturday night without skipper Jamie Lyon, Glenn Stewart and Kieran Foran. Daly Cherry-Evans, while named, is battling a calf strain while Anthony Watmough will overcome a niggling chest problem.
Try as he might...Stevie never could teach Gasnier any manners.
Here is a pic of the two shortly before kick off one night when Darius and Gaz where "admiring" the Sea Eagles cheer squad during the Dragons warm up. LOL!
You gotta love the Matai!!! Top player, great bloke!
What a dude!
An absolute champion. We have the two best centres in the NRL by a mile.
Always had plenty of talent, but seemed to be doing far too much unnecessary niggle, penalty hits. This year (and last) he still belts players but doesn't get suspended. He is in career best form, and I would put him currently as the games best centre. (as Killer hasn't hit his best form this year, although he'd still be no.2)
That is a really nice write up on matai. Nice to finally see a positive story written about him.
Matai is hated because he is an aggressive centre and plays for manly. He is one of the best centres in the game and gets up in players faces. Other players are scared of him.
I bet if he played for souffs everyone would love him. Im glad he plays for us, cause we actually appreciate how good of a player he is.
Since Beaver left I've struggled to find a "favourite" player, you know that one player that just sums up how you feel about Manly and epitomises what the club means to you.
I think Stevie is now that player. He is not the most talented player in our squad, but still very bloody good and very under rated by others. However he is the toughest, most determined motherf$%^er out there, loves his team mates and gives his all every game. Loyal to the team beyond question and never backs down. Seems a humble and family orientated guy off the field, and no doubt a big (good) influence on the young islander guys we have coming through.
Reminds me of my other favourite player as a kid, Igor Randall. If I'm looking at the Manly team for people to line up beside me in the trenches....first picked is S. Matai.
So stoked he is having a great year and showcasing some of his skills and making headlines for good reasons. Long may it continue. He should crack the 200 game club this year too, and he deserves his place among the club greats.
Talent may be temporary, but character lasts forever.
Love is not a strong enough word!
That's why it's such a shame that Glenn is leaving...He is a huge part of our aggression, which is the best asset we have at Manly. I hope Skivi get's at least one weeks suspension this season for taking someone head off...when do we play Souths again?
Ask any non-Manly supporter and they are likely to nominate Steve as the NRL player they "hate".
They say he is a dirty player. The real reason being, of course, is because he is so effective.
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