Parramatta Eels 18
Tries: Jarrad Hayne 2, Tepai Moeroa
Goals: Chris Sandow 3/3
Canberra Raiders 10
Tries: Bill Tupou, Jarrod Croker
Goals: Jarrod Croker 1/2
The rugby league community in Darwin rallied together last night as 9,527 fans, mostly Parramatta, turned up to see their Eels take on the Canberra Raiders.
Within the first 10 minutes it was evident the Raiders wouldn’t go down without a fight, both teams had their chances, but it wasn’t until a brilliant pass from Josh McCrone saw Winger Bill Tupou score his first try of the season. Jarrod Croker converted the goods from the sideline. Shortly after in the 17th minute, a beautiful cross-field kick landed in the arms of Edrick Lee near the sideline where he popped the ball off the Jarrod Croker for the four points.
Once in the lead, the Raiders continued to get the upper end of penalties and possession as they looked to have won back their attacking-flair that had been missing over the last weeks.
Parramatta finally stepped up their game within the 22nd minute when Jarryd Hayne crossed the line for his first try of the game. But considering his efforts, it was Semi Radrada who was mainly responsible for the points gained after his sprint along the sideline made the meters that mattered.
The first half ended with a small scrap between Corey Norman and Bill Tupou, but nonetheless it was on a good note for the Canberra Raiders, as they looked hopeful to get the much-anticipated 2 points.
Early into the second half, the ‘home’ crowd struggled to find their voice as Parramatta struggled to gain an attacking opportunity, and it wasn’t until 20 minutes later when a kick aimed at Will Hopoate rebounded into the arms of Bureta Faraimo who claimed to have scored a try. After a ridiculous amount of replays, the try was later disallowed.
Again the Eels were thought to have taken the lead when Chris Sandow barged over the try line in the 66th minute, only to be found held up by newly five-eighth Anthony Milford. Soon after, Tim Mannah looked to have scored a long-awaited try for both him and the team after collecting a fumble near the try line from Jarrod Croker which again was ruled a no try.
The Eels continued their attacking rampage and looked to have broken the deadlock when a Raiders fumble saw Jarryd Hayne collect a try, once again this was a knock on.
Shortly after, the Hayne Plane caused turbulence all throughout the capital state when he made a spectacular line break from the half-way line and dashed two quarters of the field all the way to the try line.
The deadlock was broken, and Parramatta were on a roll. Tepai Moeroa brought the blue and gold side home after a fumble inside the in goal gave the New Zealand Forward a try. Chris Sandow converted and finished the game with a 100% conversion rate.