Both the Parramatta Eels and the Cronulla Sharks are hoping to gain their first competition points, as they are both currently 0 in 2 heading into the match at ANZ Stadium as part of Saturday night’s double header.
TEAM FORM GUIDE
The Eels played against the Manly Sea Eagles in round two, and were embarrassed after being smashed 54 points to 0. Parramatta were in poor form, and left the ground now 0 in 2 to begin the season, which is not an ideal beginning for the club, and was not expected by the fans.
The Cronulla Sharks are also 0 in 2 to begin the season, and last Thursday had a shocking second half in the local derby against the Dragons for Cronulla’s first home game. Up 14-0 to begin the game, the Sharks let the lead get away from them, walking away without the two competition points.
Brad Takairangi suffered an eye socket injury during the match against Manly last weekend, and will be out until round ten. Daniel Alvaro and Tepai Moeroa have been placed in the starting side. The Parramatta Eels starting side is otherwise unchanged.
Aaron Gray has been replaced by Jesse Ramien, who will play in the centres. Josh Dugan has been officially named as fullback, pushing Valentine Holmes out onto the wing. Paul Gallen was removed from the team after suffering a foot injury.
The Parramatta Eels and the Cronulla Sharks will play in the second of two ANZ Stadium games on Saturday night, both teams hoping to avoid being 0 in 3 to begin the 2018 NRL season. Both sides have had poor opening rounds, and will be seeking redemption for themselves and their fans.
Parramatta are coming off a thrashing against the Sea Eagles, going down 54 points to 0. The side had high hopes for this season, and so far it doesn’t look good for them. They’re hoping to run at Cronulla and put on a show for their fans, hoping to gain their first win of the season. The Cronulla Sharks are thinking the same.
One team will walk away as the 0 in 3 side, yet based on performances from the first two seasons it’s hard to determine who that will be. Cronulla played a solid first 40 last week against the Dragons, however gave their lead away and lost their second half 20 points to 0.
The match should be an entertaining one, with both clubs aiming to claim their first win for the season, giving them necessary confidence leading into the remainder of the season.
History between these clubs is even. In the last ten matches between these teams, both Parramatta and Cronulla have won five a piece, and each will be looking to avoid 0 in 3 to start the 2018 season.
Parramatta Eels: 1. Bevan French 2. Josh Hoffman 3. Michael Jennings 4. Jarryd Hayne 5. Kirisome Auva’a 6. Corey Norman 7. Mitch Moses 8. Daniel Alvaro 9. Cameron King 10. Tim Mannah (c) 11. Manu Ma’u 12. Tepai Moeroa 13. Nathan Brown Interchange: 14. Beau Scott (c) 15. Kenny Edwards 16. Suaia Matagi 17. Kane Evans
Cronulla Sharks: 1. Josh Dugan 2. Sosaia Feki 3. Jesse Ramien 4. Ricky Leutele 5. Valentine Holmes 6. Matt Moylan 7. Chad Townsend 8. Andrew Fifita 9. Jayden Brailey 10. Matt Prior 11. Jayson Bukuya 12. Wade Graham 13. Paul Gallen* Interchange: 14. Kurt Capewell 15. James Segeyaro 16. Ava Seumanufagai 17. Joseph Paulo
*Paul Gallen has been ruled out with a foot injury, however it is still unclear who will replace him.
THE IMPORTANT DETAILS
Date: Saturday, March 24
Venue: ANZ Stadium