The Cumberland Throw

Stat Attack Review – Round 15: Eels defeat Dragons

Eels 24 defeat Dragons 10

ANZ Stadium

Crowd: 13,559

What a turn around from the Cowboys performance! The Eels dominated the Dragons and were in control from the opening whistle.

Although our boys again lost the final quarter of the game from a points perspective, in reality they muscled up when needed and finished the match in aggressive fashion.

Furthermore, we cannot ignore the injuries to Kaysa Pritchard and Beau Scott which reduced our bench rotation for that last quarter of the game and created unavoidable fatigue.

it was a great result and our second win against the Dragons. Let’s not forget we have had 5 wins against teams in the Top 8.

Let’s look at the stats that matter for Parramatta.


Parramatta Eels
H Minute Name Event Score
1 3 C.Gutherson TRY 4 – 0
1 5 C.Gutherson CONVERSION 6 – 0
1 25 C.Gutherson TRY 10 – 0
1 27 M.Moses CONVERSION 12 – 0
1 36 N.MacDonald TRY 12 – 4
1 38 G.Widdop CONVERSION MISS 12 – 4
2 47 M.Jennings TRY 16 – 4
2 49 C.Gutherson CONVERSION 18 – 4
2 57 B.French TRY 22 – 4
2 59 C.Gutherson CONVERSION 24 – 4
2 64 P.Vaughan TRY 24 – 8
2 65 G.Widdop CONVERSION 24 – 10


Full Time Stats

 PAR Team Stats  STG
50 Possession (%)


28/36 (78)

Complete/Total Sets (%) 26/35 (74)
42:45 Time – Opposition Half



Time – Opposition 20 12:59
2378 Metres Gained



Scrum Win 6
0 Goal Line Dropout



Penalty Conceded 1
0 Forty Twenty



The Eels played a great controlled game against the Dragons. How the Dragons only conceded 1 penalty is way beyond me but a pleasing aspect is how we set up pressure. It’s been some time since we forced 4 drop outs from our opponents.


1st Half

 PAR Team Stats  STG
47 Possession (%)


11/18 (61)

Complete/Total Sets (%) 15/18 (83)
15:36 Time – Opposition Half



Time – Opposition 20 7:48
1165 Metres Gained



Scrum Win 4
0 Goal Line Dropout



Penalty Conceded 0
0 Forty Twenty



The 1st half is a surprise. Looking at these stats you would think the Dragons were in control. Plenty of time with the ball and a great completion rate should have seen the Dragons well in control of this game. It proves beyond doubt that you need to capitalise on your opportunities in rugby league and the Eels did this very well yesterday.


2nd Half

 PAR Team Stats  STG
53 Possession (%)


17/18 (94)

Complete/Total Sets (%) 11/17 (65)
27:09 Time – Opposition Half



Time – Opposition 20 5:11
1212 Metres Gained



Scrum Win 2


Goal Line Dropout 2
2 Penalty Conceded


0 Forty Twenty



It was a complete reversal in the second half as we saw absolute domination from the Eels after the break. A near perfect completion rate along with brilliant game control saw every opportunity taken. Oh and we finally got a penalty in the second half too!

The statistics across the entire match should have pointed to a game sitting on a knifes edge in the final minutes. However, the numbers don’t tell the story of the accuracy of the Eels kicking game or the scrambling defence. Both were cornerstones of the much needed victory.



Top 5 Runs
Name R
 PAR N.Brown 23
 PAR M.Ma’u 20
 STG N.MacDonald 19
 STG J.Nightingale 17
 PAR S.Radradra 16
Top 5 Run Metres
Name RM
 PAR C.Gutherson 238
 PAR N.Brown 184
 PAR M.Ma’u 173
 PAR S.Radradra 170
 STG T.Lafai 157


It’s extremely pleasing to see the Eels feature heavily in the attacking stats. Last week was a very poor read but this week does show what we can do.

Five Eels ran 100 metres or more with two others in the 90’s. The Dragons in comparison had 8 players run 100 or more metres. The key difference was those Eels featured well above their counterparts to occupy the top 4 places in the list.


Clint Gutherson 238m
Nathan Brown 184m
Manu Ma’u 173m
Semi Radradra 170m
Michael Jennings 118m


Eels Run Metres:        1509m

Dragons Run Metres: 1510m



Top 5 Tackles
Name TAK
 STG C.McInnes 47
 PAR M.Ma’u 41
 STG P.Vaughan 38
 PAR K.Edwards 36
 PAR N.Brown 33
Top 5 Missed Tackles
Name MT
 PAR B.Scott 4
 PAR N.Brown 4
 PAR M.Jennings 4
 STG J.McCrone 4
 PAR B.Takairangi 4


The Eels scramble was excellent yesterday. The pressure put on the Eels defence by the Dragons attack was immense. When you check out the offload and ineffective stats it shows the Dragons were trying but the Eels just killed off the impact of the Dragons second phase plays.

The Dragons strength this year has been through their Offloads. Yesterday they got away 14 offloads to Parra’s 5. Parramatta’s missed tackle count was 35 with 24 ineffective tackles. You would think that seeing stats like that, the opposition would be running rampant. But the Eels dug deep, scrambled after the offload, and minimised the second phase play of the Dragons.


Eels:                 Tackles: 350    Missed Tackles: 34

Dragons:         Tackles: 350    Missed Tackles: 19


So as we put Round 15 to bed (and it’s all smiles as we head to bed) I just want to point out, stats wise, how good this win was.

Before the Round started the Dragons were in the Top 4. We beat a Top 4 side. As previously said, they had 8 players cart the ball 100 metres plus. We had 5. They had 5 line breaks. We made 1. They offloaded 14 times we got 5 offloads away. We missed 34 tackles, they missed 19. They conceded 1 penalty all game. We got pinged 5 times. They made 31 tackle breaks, we made 16. And let’s not forget the final 20 minutes which we lost once again.

Stack all those together and you would have thought the Dragons should’ve won this game easily.

But stats don’t show a players resolve. Or a team’s mentality. Stats at times can paint a picture of how a game flows and usually shows why and how a team won. But stats can also be deceiving.

The numbers from this game obviously highlight why Brad Arthur says there is a lot of improvement in our team and a lot to work on before we can consider ourselves to be a genuine title contender.

As we head into our first bye lets look at what lies ahead for the Eels.

  • Bye x 2
  • Bulldogs x 2
  • Storm
  • Tigers
  • Broncos x 2
  • Knights
  • Titans
  • Rabbitohs

With 9 games to go, excluding the 2 byes, going on ladder position at the moment, the Eels only play 2 teams in the current Top 8 in the Storm and Broncos.

One massive advantage in all this is we play at ANZ Stadium 7 more times in our last 9 games. Only away games are the Storm (who will be without Origin players) and the Broncos in Brisbane where we do have a fairly decent record.

Without getting too far ahead of ourselves, this is a good run home if we can keep this past weekends form up and continue improving on the above mentioned areas. Most of these games are very winnable.

The Crowd Numbers

We cannot avoid mentioning the disappointing crowd turn out. Two of the biggest supported clubs in the league could only get 13,000 at ANZ. It’s a vast stadium and the great expanses are not as intimate as the smaller suburban grounds that many enjoy watching footy in. But it’s our home for another season or so. We just broke the previous membership mark, so let’s start getting more bums on seats at home games and cheer on the boys into the finals.

The boys do lift when the Blue and Gold Army are there cheering them on. If we genuinely want our team to feature in the finals, then we have an important role to play too. The team won’t hear us cheering through the TV set. We need to make the opposition, AND THE REFEREES, aware that it’s our home ground.

I want to see our club with one of the best attendances in the league. I know a lot of factors are involved for going to the footy these days. But the club is working hard to get prices fair for everyone. Yes it’s cold but it’s a winter sport and the best feeling you can get at the footy is hearing the crowd roar when we score, when we win. When that ‘Parra’ chant goes up, let’s make it our voices and not the recorded rubbish!

Rant over.

The Eels are desperate for a break, but from a selfish perspective I hate this time of the season when byes occur. I’ll see you in 2 weeks for the Thursday night Blockbuster against arch rivals the Bulldogs. There, I’ve started the advertising for our next home game.

Yours in Blue and Gold






How can I go past Gutho??? We don’t hide our weekly award like the Dally M’s do. We give credit where it’s due. And wow all credit goes to King Guth. Gutho. The Guth Bus. In Guth We Trust. Let the accolades flow.

I was tempted to name Bevan French for this prestigious weekly award, even Manu, but looking at the figures and re-watching the game, Clint’s game was sensational.

By half time Clint had already notched up over 200 running metres and scored more points than the Dragons combined.

Above all else, we must praise his support play. To be there for the first try off a De Belin deflection was vital, as was backing up to get the Eels moving forward. How incredible was his reflex action to get that short kick from Lafai and his handling while cleaning up various kicks in the game. It just shows Clint is one of the form players in the competition. If BA keeps him at fullback, who’s to say he won’t be one of the best fullbacks in the comp in just a few weeks. Of course, my blue and gold eyes tell me that on current form he could surpass T. Trbojevic and Tedesco.

Well, he is currently the NRL’s leading point scorer!

Possessions 31
Tries 2
Runs 12
Run Metres 238m
Line Breaks 1
Tackle Breaks 3
Minutes Played 80


Stats courtesy of Champion Data. All these stats and more can be viewed on our match centre at including live game stats.

Champion Data

Follow @championdatanrl

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John EelLongfin EelmitchJonBoyChika. Recent comment authors
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thanks ,enjoyed the read !!


Hi Colmac Not wanting to take the wind out of our sail and whilst you’re correct we have had 5 wins against top 8 teams, we are yet to have a win against a top 4 team. The storm game will hardly be a true test with the “Big 3” being out on origin duty. Rounds 21 & 25 both against the the Broncos will be the only top 4 test heading into the finals so whilst it’s a favorable draw the should see plenty of wins I’m nervous considering the way we have been flogged by the Roosters and… Read more »


I think this is an excellent point, and one worth considering. But at this stage I’d prefer to make the finals and see what happens. Roosters and Cowboys losses would have taught us what to expect and the sort of intensity we need. Let’s lock in a finals appearance, and then start to really worry about our ideal preparation. Not to disregard our record, but just get there first before we worry about whether we’ll win it all. I hope that makes sense – that’s just my opinion.

Longfin Eel
Longfin Eel

It’s interesting to look at the stats when you break them down. Watching the game I thought our kicking game was very good. We haven’t had multiple kicking options for quite some time, and it is refreshing to see the games of Norman and Moses continue to develop. There has been criticism of the attacking play from this game in some social media circles, but you can clearly see in the stats that we did put pressure on the opposition, and took many of the opportunities presented to us. Some say that we were lucky in our tries, well you… Read more »

John Eel
John Eel

The Dragons play high risk or low percentage football. What gave us the win was our tough defence and most of all a great kicking game especially in the second half. This enabled the team to play with a lot of possession in the second half that did not let the Dragons back into the game.

You talk about being resolute. At one point in the second half Mitch Moses fell off a tackle but continued to chase the ball. He regained possession for the Eels with a strip in the follow up tackle attempt. He was being resolute.