By Warren Anscombe
Finals fever hits Allianz Stadium on Friday night, when Manly play South Sydney in the first Qualifying Final.
Souths will welcome back halfback Adam Reynolds for this vital encounter, whilst the Sea Eagles have been hit hard with injuries to key forwards in recent weeks.
Both sides have enjoyed victories over the other this season, with Manly winning 14-12 in Round 2 and Souths getting the money 23-4 in Round 22.
Overall Manly have won 16 of the past 26 clashes between the two, including the most recent final meeting last year with a 30-20 victory.
Clashes between the two are usually fiercely contested, with 5 of the past 6 meetings at all venues having registered 32pts or less.
Souths will certainly be looking for revenge after last year’s capitulation, however it would be foolish to write off the Sea Eagles as they live for this time of the year.
Despite their injuries I expect manly to keep this close for most of the way and could see either team getting home in what could be a nail biter.