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RugbyL: Eagles, Titans join Bulldogs in NRL lead

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Manly Sea Eagles and Gold Coast Titans registered contrasting wins to join the Canterbury Bulldogs at the top of Australia's National Rugby League on Sunday.

The Sea Eagles savaged the Canberra Raiders 54-18 at Brookvale Oval after leading 42-4 at half-time.

Meanwhile at Leichhardt Oval, the Titans were too strong for the fourth-placed Wests Tigers, winning 22-6.

Manly put on a brilliant attacking performance, brushing aside mid-week news that experienced forward Glenn Stewart was leaving the club to join South Sydney next season.

Peta Hiku scored four tries and scrum-half Daly Cherry-Evans had a hand in six of Manly's seven first-half tries in a sublime playmaking performance.

In a tribute to Stewart, the appreciative home crowd clapped for the entire 13th minute in honour of the two-time premiership winner, who has worn the Manly No.13 jersey for years.

The Raiders scored three tries in the second half but the contest was over after Manly's sensational opening term.

The Titans charged to their sixth win of the season despite scrum-half Albert Kelly suffering a possible leg fracture.

Gold Coast controlled territory from the start against a rudderless Tigers attack that could not convert opportunities when it counted.

A late Aiden Tolman try thwarted Newcastle's stirring attempt to upset Canterbury in front of recovering forward Alex McKinnon, with the Knights going down 16-12 on Saturday.

McKinnon, who suffered a broken neck playing for the Knights on March 23, made an unannounced visit to ANZ Stadium for the round eight NRL match, and Newcastle looked likely to clinch their third win of the season for him for much of a see-sawing clash.

That dream was crushed when the video referees ruled there had been no Bulldogs knock-on when prop Tolman came up with a kick to dive over seven minutes from fulltime for the winning try.

Champions Sydney Roosters bounced back to their premiership winning best with a comprehensive 34-14 Anzac Day victory over St George Illawarra on Friday.

The Roosters led 18-8 at halftime and 24-14 midway through the second half before late tries to Boyd Cordner and Shaun Kenny-Dowall sealed the win.

The New Zealand Warriors hung on for a gripping 16-10 win over the Storm in Melbourne on Friday.

It was the Storm's fourth defeat from their past five matches, while the Warriors, despite coming into the game second-last in the standings, once again lifted themselves for the challenge of playing the Storm.

The win snapped a three-game losing streak for the Warriors and provided a first victory for new coach Andrew McFadden.

South Sydney benefited from two dubious calls Friday to hold out Brisbane and claim a remarkable 28-26 win at Brisbane's Suncorp Stadium.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/140427/rugbyl-eagles-titans-join-bulldogs-nrl-lead