Matai injured as Bulldogs beat Sea Eagles


Steve Matai has had a night to forget as Canterbury notched their second win of the NRL season with a 16-12 defeat of Manly at Brookvale Oval.

Matai missed an easy conversion from next to the posts, then came up with a costly error that led to a Bulldogs try before suffering an elbow injury in an ugly-looking collision with teammate Feleti Mateo.

After Canterbury opened the scoring through Tim Lafai, Manly responded through a Mateo try, however Matai’s conversion went badly astray.

Des Hasler’s side went further in front when the Sea Eagles centre turned his back on a Moses Mbye bomb, allowing it to bounce into the hands of Sam Perrett, who shovelled it onto Tim Lafai for another four-pointer.

Matai went some way to atoning for his error when he crossed for a controversial try after the break that got the Sea Eagles back to within two.

When Matai regathered a Daly Cherry-Evans grubber, it appeared Bulldogs prop Aiden Tolman had held him up and on-field referee Matt Cecchin sent it upstairs but gave an initial ruling of no try.

However he was overruled by video referees Bernard Sutton and Luke Phillips, who awarded the try.

Matai came off in the 58th minute when he hyperextended his elbow after colliding with Mateo while making a tackle.

It was a bitter blow for Manly after losing Matai’s centre partner and captain Jamie Lyon before kick off with a leg injury. Matai did return with five minutes to go.

The Sea Eagles set up a grandstand finish when Peta Hiku crossed in the corner after getting the ball back from the restart, however the Bulldogs closed the game out.

In the other NRL match on Friday night, the Brisbane Broncos beat the North Queensland Cowboys 44-22. - AAP


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