Making the eight has been a good acheivement. This is because: We Lost two massive chunks of our salary cap after round 1. Losing our captain during the off season. Having to change our halves during the off season who had never paired together before. This caused lossed of combinations that had worked so well in years past. e.g Orford and Watmough. Having to change our halves again after the first game. Blooding a rookie halfback in round 2. He hasn't been dropped and has been a consistent performer. The injury to George Rose, who looked dynamic at the start of the year. Playing Ben Farrar at fullback who had never played in the position before. The mid season injury worries of Jamie Lyon. The demolition of St George after we had 7 or so players backing up from rep duties the night before. We were in the top 4 for a majority of the season. At the start of the season, if you were told that this would of happened to Manly throughout the season. I think that you would have been happy with where we are presently. Maybe our good run at the start of the year out our expectations to high of a team being lead around by rookie halves? I know if we hadn't played so well earlier in the year and had been in and out of the top 8 then people would be much more optimistic towards our chances of winning the comp, as we are currently sitting in 7th position and they would be happy with that position as we would not have been as well placed as that throughout earlier stages of the season.