2020 NRL – Manly Sea Eagles vs Melbourne Storm Preview & Prediction

THE FACTS

When is Manly Sea Eagles vs Melbourne Storm taking place? Sunday 15th March, 2020 – 05:05 (UK)

Where is Manly Sea Eagles vs Melbourne Storm taking place? Lottoland, Brookvale

What is the expected weather for Manly Sea Eagles vs Melbourne Storm? 21c in mostly cloudy skies

What channel is Manly Sea Eagles vs Melbourne Storm on? Sky Sports Arena will be televising selected NRL games in the UK and you can find their schedule here. For Australian broadcasters, you can find a list here

Where can I stream Manly Sea Eagles vs Melbourne Storm? If televised on Sky Sports, then subscribers will be able to stream the match live via Sky Go. Alternatively, the match will be available to subscribers of Watch NRL

Where can I get tickets for Manly Sea Eagles vs Melbourne Storm? Click here for ticket information on 2020 NRL matches

THE TEAM NEWS

MANLY SEA EAGLES

Starting 13: T. Trbojevic, Taufua, Parker, Suli, Garrick, Walker, Cherry-Evans, Fonua-Blake, Levi, Taupau, Thompson, Sironen, J. Trbojevic – Interchanges: Croker, Keppie, Boyle, Olakau’atu – Reserves: Sipley, Elliot, Funa, Saddler

Unavailable: Manase Fainu (Disciplinary), Jake Gosiewski (Injured), Albert Hopoate (Injured), Taniela Paseka (Injured)

  • Manly enjoyed an impressive first season in Des Hasler’s second spell in charge of the club but they were knocked out of the play-offs in the second week as their injury-hit side succumbed to South Sydney late in the contest.
  • The Sea Eagles were quiet in the transfer market and added just two players with Danny Levi the most interesting arrival and he will make his debut at hooker in this opening game of the season with Api Koroisau opting to leave the club and return to Penrith.
  • Jake Trbojevic and Addin Fonua-Blake were both expected to be missing for this clash with Melbourne but the pair were surprise inclusion in the initial teams that were named on Tuesday.

MELBOURNE STORM

Starting 13: Papenhuyzen, Vunivalu, Seve, Olam, Addo-Carr, Munster, Hughes, J. Bromwich, C. Smith, Kamikamica, Kaufusi, K. Bromwich, Finucane – Interchanges: Grant, Faasuamaleaui, King, Eisenhuth – Reserves: Asofa-Solomona, Lee, Jacks, Schonig

Unavailable: Christian Welch (Injured), Brandon Smith (Injured)

  • Melbourne finished as minor premiers in 2019 but failed to make their advantage count in the play-offs as they were defeated in the first week by Canberra which made their route to the Grand Final a more difficult one.
  • The Storm were able to overcome Parramatta in an impressive response in the following week, they then had to travel to reigning champions Sydney Roosters for a place in the Grand Final with Melbourne falling short in that contest.
  • Nelson Asofa-Solomona will need to prove his fitness if he is to feature in this opening match of the season with a decision set to be made on him in the build-up but he was only named among the reserves when the initial teams were announced on Tuesday.

THE PREDICTION

Manly and Melbourne will renew their rivalry with a mouth-watering clash to begin the season. The pair have played out some pulsating clashes over the last couple of years and this should be no different. Both teams will fancy their chances of a tilt at this year’s Grand Final and will want to lay down a marker for the season in this battle. This could go either way but defences should be on top in a tight game that goes under 41.5 points.

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