The Roar
The Roar


2013 NRL Grand Final: Roosters lead Manly 8-6 at halftime

6th October, 2013

The Sydney Roosters withstood some early nerves and a ferocious Manly onslaught to take an 8-6 lead into halftime in the NRL grand final at ANZ Stadium.

Seeking their first title since 2002, the Roosters looked shaky during the opening stages, when James Maloney kicked out on the full and Sonny Bill Williams knocked-on near his own line inside the first 10 minutes.

Dual international Williams, who may be playing his last game in the NRL before a mooted return to rugby union, was made to pay for his error, with Manly winger Jorge Taufua diving over for a try out wide off the ensuing set.

Taufua joined wing partner David Williams in collecting his 20th try for the season, making them the fifth most prolific wing pairing in one season.

The Sea Eagles were brutal with and without the ball – at one stage driving Roosters winger Daniel Tupou back 10 metres into his in-goal to earn a line drop out.

An offside penalty allowed Jamie Lyon to make it 6-0 with an easy kick, and Williams’ desperation to make up for his earlier had him throwing some ill-advised offloads.

The Roosters got level when Tupou touched down on 25 minutes, Maloney kicking to the right wing and then the left where the tall winger was too much for David Williams, who could only tackle the soaring Tupou’s legs in mid-air as he fell over the line.

Things were getting heated as Justin Horo was penalised near his own line, Maloney adding a penalty goal as something close to a head-butt by Jared Waerea-Hargreaves on Horo went unpunished.

The Roosters hounded the Sea Eagles’ line late in the half but failed to add to their lead, though they did take momentum to the sheds.