You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content

Tom Trbojevic produced a stunning six try involvements and a stats line that read like a winning lotto ticket in Manly's madcap 38-32 comeback win over the Warriors.

Injuries and unhelpful hamstrings had Trbojevic's teammates dubbing him "Slats" – referencing Test cricketer Michael Slater's nervous 90s – as he struggled to reach his 100th NRL outing.

But the beloved Northern Beaches boy had the number crunchers hot, heavy and then some when he got there.

Just as he did in his maiden and 50th NRL games, Trbojevic bagged a brace of tries.

Just for fun, he added four try assists, five line breaks, three line break assists, eight tackle busts and 197 running metres as Jason Saab helped himself to a hat-trick in 11 minutes as well.

In the old Rugby League Week player ratings where 10/10s were as rare as hen's teeth, this was an 11 from Trbojevic, while the all-out attack from both sides wasn't bad on the eyes either.

The No.1's outstanding numbers and second-half ball-playing played a telling role in an end-to-end, at times error-strewn contest in which the Warriors blew a 20-12 half-time lead.

"He was good in patches," coach Des Hasler started out, before eventually acknowledging not even he could slide Trbojevic's influence under the radar.

"The scary part is he's still building into the season. He's managing it really well.

"He's just such a damaging player. He makes defences think twice, you give him a bit of space and away he goes.

Turbo busts through for a double

"He's just a footballer. He can play centre, he can play wing, he's just a really good footballer.

"You see his attack. But you've got to look also at how he reads the game, he reads it so well defensively as most [number] ones do."

Five second-half tries from the Sea Eagles snapped a six-game losing streak at Lottoland as Manly's 2011 premiership-winners celebrated their 10-year anniversary.

In a sign of the times, that side went undefeated at Brookvale en route to that title, while Des Hasler's current mob made mistakes aplenty before getting their act together after the break.

The Warriors went missing for much of the second half until late tries to Chanel Harris-Tavita – back for his first NRL action since playing with a broken foot against the Knights in round two – and whizz-kid Reece Walsh had them storming home late.

But for two brilliant defensive plays by Saab – a high-octane take of a towering bomb, followed by a clutch try-saving tackle on Ed Kosi over the sideline – Kodi Nikorima would have been kicking for a 38-all deadlock on full-time.

A badly butchered effort by the Warriors No.7 proved as telling as any in the end, with Nikorima piloting the pill into touch instead of finding either of his two unmarked teammates.

Jake gets the fast ball, Tom scores the try

Manly's Morgan Harper doubled down on the error in the very next set with a bullocking four-pointer of his own.

"At 20-12 we should've walked over the line," Warriors coach Nathan Brown said.

"The [Nikorima] error didn't cost us the game, it's how we struggle with momentum, when things don't go away and momentum is against us, to become a good side you're going to have opportunities ... if you don't take them, it's how you respond that makes you a good team.

"Our response to that wasn't great and we invited Daly [Cherry-Evans] and Tommy Turbo into the contest."

From there it was all maroon and white, with Saab unleashed down that same right-edge for the Sea Eagles to take the lead.

When Reuben Garrick crossed six minutes later on the opposite edge, Trbojevic had thrown the last pass for both and Manly looked home and hosed.

Saab has a hat-trick

Saab had himself two more tries in two minutes as the Warriors wilted badly, Trbojevic of course busting them up the middle with a long break in the process.

It was Trbojevic too who fired the first shots for Manly as flat-footed, flimsy goal-line defence from both sides led to them trading two tries each across the first 20 minutes.

Harris-Tavita took just two minutes to carve through Manly, before Trbojevic did likewise at the other end.

The milestone man had his second within three minutes as the Warriors stood stock still while he kept motoring, before Tohu Harris answered in kind from close range as well for a 12-12 scoreline.

Manly prop Sean Keppie produced the type of defence sorely lacking on both try lines to force turnovers out of Harris-Tavita and Josh Curran, only for his Sea Eagles teammates to oblige with errors of their own.

It was another fumble from Saab under the high ball that gave Curran his first NRL try and the Warriors an eight-point half-time lead.

But with Trbojevic in rare touch and their own defence dropping by the wayside, it was never going to last long.

Compounding yet another yo-yo defeat for the Warriors – they have gone win-loss each week for more than a month now – Harris (crusher tackle) and Curran (raising the knees) were placed on report, while Saab was also cited for a crusher tackle on Adam Pompey as well.

Press Conference: Sea Eagles v Warriors - Round 9, 2021

Sign up for a free NRL Account to access this video and other exclusive content.

Sign Up

Already have an NRL Account?

Log In

Not sure?   Learn more about an NRL Account .

Acknowledgement of Country

New South Wales Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

Platinum Partner

Major Partners

View All Partners