5 Oct 2013

Sea Eagles underestimated: Toovey

11:46 am on 5 October 2013

Manly coach Geoff Toovey believes his side's path to Sunday's National Rugby League grand final was helped by other teams underestimating just how strong the Sea Eagles would be this season.

Manly play the Sydney Roosters in the final, their fourth premiership decider since 2007 but at the start of the year many thought this would be a season of struggle.

They suffered a heavy loss in last year's preliminary final to the Melbourne Storm and the recruitment of three low-key signings in Brenton Lawrence, Justin Horo and Tom Symonds to augment an ageing roster.

But Toovey says his players were lifted by the criticism and were desperate to prove their doubters wrong.