Manly's Bell happy to sidestep limelight

  • We had an issue with background services between march 10th and 15th or there about. This meant the payment services were not linking to automatic upgrades. If you paid for premium membership and are still seeing ads please let me know and the email you used against PayPal and I cam manually verify and upgrade your account.
  • We have been getting regular requests for users who have been locked out of their accounts because they have changed email adresses over the lifetime of their accounts. Please make sure the email address under your account is your current and correct email address in order to avoid this in the future. You can set your email address at
  • Wwe are currently experience some server issues which I am working through and hoping to resolve soon, Please bare with me whilst I work through making some changes and possible intermittent outages.
  • Apologies all our server was runing rogue. I managed to get us back to a point from 2:45 today though there is an attachment issue i will fix shortly. Things should be smooth now though


Manly's Bell happy to sidestep limelight

With all eyes on Matt Orford's Manly debut, fellow Sea Eagles recruit Steve Bell is hoping to slip under the radar at Brookvale Oval on Saturday night.

The two former Melbourne mainstays will play their first NRL regular season match in the maroon and white against an understrength Canberra side.

Bell knows the performance of high-profile buy Orford will be closely monitored by the Sea Eagles faithful, but that hasn't calmed the 29-year-old's nerves heading into the match.

"There's a little bit of that I guess (more pressure on Orford), but it means a lot for me to play for Manly," Bell said.

"They've been really good to me and I want to repay them now, which is why I've put a bit of pressure on myself to perform tomorrow night."

The Sea Eagles went after Bell and Orford in a bid to bolster a backline which lacked firepower for much of last season. With the likes of representative players Steve Menzies, Brent Kite, Jason King, Anthony Watmough and skipper Ben Kennedy in the forward pack, Manly knew it possessed the necessary muscle to compete up the middle with any side in the competition, and now the backline looks more capable of capitalising on the platform they build.

With five years playing together at the Storm under their belt, Bell is hoping his familiarity with the former City halfback's style of play pays dividends tomorrow night.

"It's definitely a help, you sort of know what he's on about and where he's going," Bell said.

"We're getting there (with our combinations), each week there's been a little bit of improvement."

The Raiders too could take a little time to get into gear, with coach Matt Elliott naming three debutants in his opening round outfit.

Winger Adrian Purtell, prop Willie Raston and second rower Ben Jones will make their first appearances in the top grade after serving long apprenticeships in the Raiders' lower grades.

Outside backs Craig Frawley (ankle) and Nathan Smith, props Michael Weyman (ankle) and Dane Tilse (chest) and backrowers Alan Rothery (shoulder) and Kris Kahler (shoulder) are all on the injured list, leaving Elliott with little alternative but to blood the newcomers.

But Elliott said it was the pre-season form of the trio which forced his hand, dismissing claims the Raiders would go into the match under-par.

"At this level it's not about being young or old it's about picking the players that are playing the best," Elliott said.

"That's why we trial, we trial to have a look at the structures of play that we're looking to utilise and to see who's playing the best footy.

"At the moment we have a lot of guys who are pushing for first grade selection, and these guys have played the best footy so far."

The Raiders enter the match having lost their last three matches between the two sides.

Members online

Latest posts

Team P W L PD Pts
17 14 3 141 34
17 12 5 118 30
17 11 6 125 28
18 11 7 209 26
18 10 7 97 25
17 9 8 63 24
17 9 8 46 24
18 10 8 3 24
17 9 8 -56 24
17 8 9 -91 22
18 8 10 25 20
17 7 10 -90 20
18 8 10 -97 20
18 7 10 -34 19
17 6 11 -89 18
17 4 13 -153 14
18 4 14 -217 12
Top Bottom