Scott Morrison's Liberal-National coalition is edging closer to a majority after yesterday's federal election.
Having miraculously seen off a challenge by Bill Shorten's Labor team on Saturday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison went to church on Sunday before his beloved Cronulla Sharks played the Manly Sea Eagles at PointsBet Stadium.
Unfortunately for Cronulla's number one ticket holder and all Sharks fans an understrength Manly proved too good for the home team with a 24-14 upset win.
Mr Morrison could be seen in the crowd baying for a repeat of his election night jailbreak but there was no election-style "miracle" comeback from Cronulla after gifting Manly a match-winning 20-point lead inside the opening 45 minutes.
"Thanks again to all Australians all across the country," Mr Morrison said today.
As counting continues in the federal election, three seats remain close, and incumbents trail in 10 lower house electorates.
With just over 75 per cent of the vote counted on Sunday, the coalition appeared to hold 73 seats - three short of a majority.
The Australian Electoral Commission figures named the close seats as Bass (Tasmania), Chisholm (Victoria) and Macquarie (NSW).
Scott Morrison has given thanks to Australians after pulling off an extraordinary election win.
The prime minister went to church with wife Jenny on Sunday morning after the miracle victory.
"I give thanks to live in the greatest country in all the world," he told reporters outside the Horizon Church.
"Thanks again to all Australians all across the country."
Hugging members of the church congregation, Mr Morrison praised the people of the Sutherland Shire in his home seat of Cook, and his team of local volunteers.
"They have stayed with me ever since I was first elected to parliament in 2007," he said.
"You don't get to be prime minister and serve in that capacity unless you are first a member of your local electorate."
Pastor Andrew Evans, a former South Australian state politician who founded the Family First party, ministered the service on Sunday morning.
The prime minister has been in touch with US President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence.
He has had contact from the UK and is expected to speak to Prime Minister Theresa May on Sunday afternoon.
French President Emmanuel Macron and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern have also offered their congratulations directly.
So too have former New Zealand prime ministers John Key and Bill English.
Overnight, the prime minister received a rapturous reception after defying the pundits in a come-from-behind victory.
"I have always believed in miracles," he told jubilant Liberal supporters in Sydney on Saturday night, with his wife and two daughters by his side.
"I'm standing with the three biggest miracles of my life here tonight and tonight we have been delivered another one."
Hundreds of Liberal diehards who packed into the ballroom of the Sofitel Wentworth Hotel erupted in deafening delight when Mr Morrison entered the room around midnight.
But the prime minister declared the surprise election result a victory for "quiet Australians".
"It's always been about them."
Liberal diehards had come expecting a funeral but somehow found themselves at a coronation.
Mr Morrison, who became prime minister less than nine months ago after the Liberal Party rolled Malcolm Turnbull, is hungry to get back to work.
"We've got a lot of work to do. We're going to get back to work for the Australians that we know go to work every day, who face those struggles and trials every day," he said.
"They're looking for a fair go and they're having a go and they're going to get a go from our government."
The coalition will be returned to government after winning at least 74 of the 76 seats needed to form a majority in parliament.
A number of seats are still in doubt, but Mr Morrison acknowledged those candidates who defied the odds to buck expected defeats.
He singled out the Sunshine State, where Labor failed to make an impact.
"How good's Queensland?" he said, to chants of Queensland from the crowd.
"I never thought I'd hear that in this room in NSW this close to Origin."
Mr Morrison will watch his beloved Cronulla Sharks play later in the day.
The real work begins on Monday, when the coalition government returns to Canberra.
Australian Associated Press