Brendan Wood reviews the Parramatta Eels hard fought win over the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles on Friday night.
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 20
Tries: Tolutau Koula (21), Jason Saab (29), Christian Tuipulotu (45)
Goals: Reuben Garrick (22, 24, 31, 54)
Parramatta Eels 36
Tries: Maika Sivo (3, 9), Tom Opacic (34), Waqa Blake (56), Clint Gutherson (62), Will Penisini (69), Dylan Brown (72)
Goals: Clint Gutherson (36, 63, 70, 73)
MATCH REPORTEmbed from Getty Images
In front of a sell-out crowd a 4 Pines Park, it was the Eels who hit their straps. Two tries for Maika Sivo in the opening 10 minutes had the crowd quiet.
With the Eels attacking, they kept their foot on Manly’s throat, making the home side work hard for every metre. Despite the attacking onslaught from the Eels, Manly turned the momentum around and soon they had their first points.
Daly Cherry-Evans kicked across field for Tolutau Koula to leap into the in-goal and score. Following the Koula try, a penalty to Manly right in front allowed Reuben Garrick to level the scores at 8 all.
Five minutes later, Manly took the lead, this time Jason Saab produced a forward roll to score in the corner. However, the momentum swung quickly and the Eels responded. Shaun Lane and Clint Gutherson combined for Tom Opacic to finish off a try, levelling the scores 14 all at the break.
After halftime, Manly came out firing. An early error from Reed Mahoney saw Christian Tuipulotu score on the next play.
A few minutes later, Haumole Olakau’atu was taken out chasing a kick, and Manly opted to take the two points. However, an acrobatic try from Waqa Blake had the Eels back within two points.
The Blake try opened the floodgates for the Eels, as they grabbed the lead. Again, it was Shaun Lane and Clint Gutherson combining, with the latter accelerating around Reuben Garrick to score. Another try to Will Penisini followed, which had the Eels in the box seat heading into the final 10 minutes.
Putting the icing on the cake, Dylan Brown scored a long range solo try to seal a comeback win for the Eels. The win keeps them equal 3rd on the ladder, while Manly remain two wins outside the top eight.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR POINTSEmbed from Getty Images
3 pts – Clint Gutherson (Parramatta Eels), 2 pts – Shaun Lane (Parramatta Eels), 1 pt – Dylan Brown (Parramatta Eels)
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