Canterbury coach Trent Barrett has again aired his frustration with the referees, complaining about a contentious try awarded to the Sea Eagles as well as a hair-pull penalty against Joe Stimson.
The Tom Trbojevic try early in the second half moved Manly into the lead – one they never relinquished – and was compounded by a hair-pull penalty against Stimson that extended that advantage and left Stimson on report.
Attempting to tackle Martin Taupau around the 60-minute mark, Stimson grabbed Taupau's jersey and got the Manly prop's braids caught in his hands before quickly releasing his grip.
Manly took two points from the infringement to extend their lead from four to six and the report allowed them a free interchange as well.
"The hair pull – it gives them another two points and kicks them six clear instead of four," Barrett said.
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"Joe Stimson, his hand got tangled up in [Taupau's] hair. He gets put on report.
"They get a free interchange, in the searing heat which would have worked in our favour as well, and it costs us two points. It's not Joe's fault Marty's got long hair."
Barret was also unhappy with the decision to allow the previous Trbojevic try despite the fullback appearing to lose the ball in the in-goal area as he grounded it.
"I watched Trent Robinson's press conference the other day and I can see why he was so frustrated," he said.
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"I haven't got that good of a rant in me but those two ones in particular, coupled with – I think the possession was 71-29 against us in the second half in that heat, against a red hot team like Manly, you can't win. We were brave. Then the unforced errors at the back end blew the scoreline out.
"I thought to be in front 12-10 [at half-time] was a really good effort from our boys."
Barrett again acknowledged his side needs to be better at handling adversity and was left to rue a mounting second-half error toll after a perfect 18-from-18 start to the match.
"We don't react well to things when they go against us, that's something we're going to have to work hard on the pre-season but we were 18 from 18 in the first half," he said.
"In the second half, even with the game in the balanced we came up with four unforced errors from our outside backs. As a forward, they'd be pretty dirty … we just can't make those mistakes.
"We're not a good enough team to hand teams, especially teams with Tom Trbojevic in there, cheap possession and that's what we did in the second half.
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"To throw an intercept at the death again to blow that score out, that's what hurts because our effort was really good but execution wasn't great at times."
Barrett admitted it had been "a tough week" with Lachlan Lewis and Adam Elliott under investigation for off-field incidents.
"You don't need those distractions. The club certainly doesn't need any adverse publicity as well," he said.
"It was disappointing but I thought, you saw the effort from the players today, they do care a lot about their performance and they're disappointed in the sheds again. It's been a tough week."
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Barrett was desperate to finish the season with one last win when they play Wests Tigers, particularly to send the departing players out on a positive note.
"Next week's a big one for us, we'll put everything into trying to finish the season with a win," he said.
"We've got some players that are leaving the club. Will Hopoate being one of them who's been here a long time, we'd like to prepare well again and send him out with a win."