Manly back-rower Jamie Buhrer says he is relieved the club gets to run back out on Thursday night as they look to get their season back on track after a poor loss at Parramatta last Friday night.
Buhrer – one of his team's best in recent weeks – had an off night against the Eels with some uncharacteristic errors and was hard on himself at a Monday morning media call, declaring "you're only as good as your last game".
But with four wins needed from as many starts to have a chance of playing finals this year, Buhrer added Manly were definitely keeping the dream alive.
"It wasn't ideal going down on the weekend but mathematically we're still a chance but we've definitely got to take care of business this week," Buhrer said.
"The weekend's game aside I think we've been playing some really good footy as a team and if we're going to force our way into the eight we're going to have to do it the hard way against some quality opposition."
Buhrer admitted the in-your-face defence from an undermanned Eels outfit rattled the Sea Eagles and was one of the reasons they weren't able to distribute more quality ball to in-form fullback Tom Trbojevic, who was well contained last Friday after an explosive match-winning effort a week earlier against the Knights.
"It was never the goal to not get him quality ball. I think the way Parramatta defended – I won't say it took us off guard but I think it rattled us a little bit, I think they did a good job there," Buhrer said.
"We'll be working this week to rectify it and make sure he's getting some good ball in good opportunities to play the way he plays."
Manly's Thursday night opponents Canterbury have done enough the past two weeks to get past the Knights and Dragons since a horror loss in Townsville in Round 20 but haven't yet recaptured the form that had them being talked up as premiership hopes through the middle third of the season.
"It's good that we have the short turnaround because we're playing on Thursday, we just want to get back out there. We know what we can do, they're going to be fired up, they'll be a big test for us but we'll be very eager to get back out there on Thursday night," Buhrer said.
"Speaking to a few of the boys, I think defensively we did some really good things on the weekend.
"Just our attack wasn't anywhere near where it has been and we're really keen to get out there on Thursday night. Obviously our season's at stake, we're excited and we're fired up for it."
Buhrer handed himself a fair bit of the blame for Friday's loss despite his stellar form in the weeks prior to that.
"I've been happy with how I've been playing aside from the weekend. I dropped a few balls at costly times so you're only as good as your last game. I'm eager to get out there and rectify that," he added.