Four Pointer: Parramatta Eels 16 Canberra Raiders 22
It was a tough match that was anyone’s game, and in the end it was the Raiders who stole the two competition points by just one converted try, winning for captain Jarrod Croker’s 200th NRL match.
Hard to Pick a Winner
It was a tough game from both sides, with it going right down to the wire only for Rapana to score in the 72nd minute to seal the deal and break a losing streak for the Canberra Raiders. Parramatta were down ten points to nil, then fought their way back to an even score line for the half time break. They led by six until the Raiders came back, making it an even score, and then eventually winning the match. Prior to the game it was definitely hard to predict a winner for the match, and that was evident during the game, too. Both sides played with confidence and commitment, pouncing at every opportunity they were given. The Eels became evidently tired and at the loss of Jennings late in the game, the Raiders were able to capitalise in attack and win the game.
Raider’s Right Side is Special
Both the attack and the defence of the Raiders’ right hand side, consisting of Austin, Rapana and Leilua, who all scored a try to contribute to their win on Saturday night. The Raiders are a strong team, and this right hand side is a great combination. The past few weeks have been pour, however Saturday night’s display was anything but substandard – they were fantastic and made significant contributions to the side’s attack and defence. The tries they scored were great, and their defensive efforts didn’t go unnoticed. The overall performance of this trio was strong and their commitment and communication was evident throughout the eighty minutes.
Injuries left Parra in Pain
The Parramatta Eels were down two players during Saturday night’s game, with Nathan Brown and Michael Jennings being added to their injury toll for the season so far. Eels’ Lock Nathan Brown was forced off the field after he found himself clutching at his ribs at the twenty minute mark of the match. Following the game, coach Brad Arthur confirmed Brown’s rub injury, saying “It was ribs so he’s gone to the hospital just to see where it’s at. He was in a fair bit of discomfort, he’s pretty tough so fingers crossed it’s not too bad.” Michael Jennings also limped off the field with just twelve minutes remaining on the match – when the Raiders won the match. It is unknown the extent of the injury yet, however Arthur confirmed the quadricep injury that he will have scans on. These injuries are the last thing that they want for the club, with French only just returning after a knee complaint, along with Norman, Pritchard and Takairangi also on the injury list.
Moses’ Nerves Were Obvious
Mitchell Moses made his long awaited debut for the blue and gold on Saturday night, and now the question remains: how long will it take him to adjust to his new team? It’s hard to say, especially judging off the mixed performance he put on during the Raiders game, where his nerves were quite evident. He made one offload and had a high tackle success rate, making nine runs. However his first touch of the ball resulted in an error, which gave the Raiders solid field position. He conceded a penalty, and his passing was off in patches. He’s a great player, and this was shown in patches on Saturday night, however now the league community it going to play the waiting game to see when he’ll be back to his best as he begins his contract with the Parramatta Eels.
Tries: Manu Ma’u, Michael Jennings, Siosaia Vave
Goals: Clinton Gutherson, 2
Tries: Nick Cotric, Joseph Leilua, Blake Austin, Jordan Rapana
Goals: Jarrod Croker, 3