The Warriors put in their worst performance of their National Rugby League season at exactly the wrong time on Saturday, thrashed 40-10 by the Broncos in their opening finals match in Brisbane.
But the Auckland side remains alive in the playoffs after Manly overcame a major scare to easily eliminate North Queensland 42-8 in Sydney.
The Warriors now need Melbourne to beat Newcastle in today's last qualifying final, a likely result that will ensure a second life in the shape of a week two finals encounter with Wests Tigers next weekend.
Warriors coach Ivan Cleary was brutally honest after the horror hiding, saying that everything that could have gone wrong did and it was all bad.
In keeping with the Warriors' woeful evening highlighted by winger Manu Vatuvei's butter-fingered display, centre Joel Moon suffered a suspected broken leg in the 57th minute.
Better results for the defending premier Junior Warriors in the under-20 competition - they're just a win away from their second consecutive grand final after swamping Newcastle 54-6 in their qualifying final at Suncorp Stadium.
The Junior Warriors go straight through to week three of the finals.