Eels defeat Sea Eagles 10 – 9
After weeks of near misses and dubious officiating, the Eels triumphed in a very physical and at times fiery clash against arch enemies the Manly Sea Eagles.
From the opening exchanges and pats on the head, this game was going to be a dour affair. Both teams were up for the challenge. For Parra it was a case of looking to finish the year on a strong note and for Manly it was to keep alive their slim finals chances.
The stats show that this game was definitely a very tight affair. Although Parra held the ascendency in Manly’s half throughout the game, the match itself was played between the 20 metre lines of both teams. Parra and Manly had equal time in their opponent’s 20 metre zone, but goal line defence from both sides was exceptional.
In the 1st half the Eels were up against it. As you can see the 1st half belonged too Manly, but to go into the sheds at only 7 – 6 down showed the resolve of 2016 Eels. A slight concern would be that the Eels had 10 minutes extra in Manly’s half, with incomplete sets letting the Eagles off the hook.
The 2nd half was a complete opposite to the first. Parra dominated possession and their completion rate was exceptional.
Again this half was played between the two twenty metre lines. Time in the opposition 20’s was only minimal. In what became the feature of this game, great defence from both sides again dominated.
The 2nd half stats do showing the lack of attacking flair in an Eels line up containing a makeshift halves pairing. A completion rate above 80% should result in more points and it would have were it not for an obstruction penalty.
In an indication of their dominance, the Eels ran for 1442m while Manly ran 1299m. Six Eels made the 100 metre plus mark against the Eagles four players. This was a great effort from the Eels in sharing the work load. Kudos must go to the backs for picking up the extra metres with our forwards who no doubt would have been feeling the pinch from a heavy defensive workload.
- Tim Mannah 95m
The Eels completed a monster 344 tackles against Manly’s 337. It may not have been everybody’s cup of tea, but it was a great defensive game of footy that had a lot of people sitting on the edge of their seats.
In an indication of the defensive demands from this game, nine Eels made 20 or more tackles with another three just behind on 18 and 19.
Certainly our forwards and bench must be commended. What particularly caught my eye on the night was Parramatta’s read on Tom Trbojevic. This was a major factor in keeping Manly quiet. We should also not forget Danny Wicks’ effort in chasing down a flying Matthew Wright late in the second half. That just typifies Danny’s year. A winger breaks down the side line, and after all the tackles and hit ups, Danny still puts his wheels on and gets to the flying winger.
All in all this game for me shows Parramatta’s great new attitude and their success in learning to play 80 minute football.
With all of this year’s adversity, the Blue and Gold players have never dropped their heads. It’s a massive indication on how the boys have bought into what Brad Arthur is asking of them.
It’s a great shame as we won’t be in the finals this year as we are a team who deserves to be there. When you look at the top 8, a number of the sides are really mixing their form or indeed were lucky to be pushed up the ladder due to Parra’s 12 points penalty.
STAT ATTACK PLAYER OF THE WEEK
The ‘King of Cramps’ was at his best in this game. No not with 30 seconds to go performance but rather his brilliant effort off the bench which was inspirational in the Eels win.
This year, Kenny has shown his versatility and growth as a leader and senior figure in this team.
He hasn’t shirked any responsibility given to him by BA and has taken his opportunities with both hands and given it his all.
Lets also not forget his brilliant mid week pressers and his love for Home and Away.
|Runs (Metres)||13 (166m)|
Stats courtesy of Champion Data. All these stats and more can be viewed on our match centre at http://mc.championdata.com/nrl/ including live game stats. Or download the Telstra Sportsfan app and/or Triple M NRL app.
Apps: Telstra Sportsfan, Triple M NRL
Credit to the Parramatta Eels for images used.