EELS – 20 (Tries: B. French, D. Gower, M. Jennings, M. Moses. Goals: M. Moses 2 from 4)
SHARKS – 22 (Tries: S. Feki (2), C. Townsend, E. Lee. Goals: 3 from 5)
Southern Cross Group Stadium
Did we deserve to win? No. Normally I don’t mind being nostalgic but the majority of this game was akin to revisiting our first 6 weeks of season 2018. No pressure, no attack, and ill discipline at the wrong times. You cant win a game by just playing six minutes of footy.
Once again, the Eels scored the same amount of tries as their opposition but a couple of missed kicks proved costly.
That said, Mitchell’s final miss wasn’t the cause cost of the loss. The previous 79mins lost that game. Throw in a defining penalty given away by Suaia Matagi right under the posts and it all added up to the Eels returning to their bad ways.
Full Times Stats
|28/36 (78)||Complete/Total Sets (%)||23/35 (66)|
|44:09||Time – Opposition Half||37:18|
|20:18||Time – Opposition 20||14:43|
|0||Goal Line Dropout||4|
The poor completion rate was a major factor again for the Eels. You really need to complete at 75% or more to give yourself a good opportunity to win a game. It’s the only way to build genuine pressure. The Eels have to hold onto that ball and play with patience. They have to play simple footy to get a good foot hold on the game. Something we didn’t do until it was till late in this game.
1st Half Stats
|14/18 (78)||Complete/Total Sets (%)||13/18 (72)|
|19:19||Time – Opposition Half||20:53|
|12:40||Time – Opposition 20||5:50|
|0||Goal Line Dropout||1|
Obviously the Sharks set up their win in the first half. A good completion rate and getting the majority of the ball in this half gave the Sharks good territory. A decent chunk of their time in our half was in our red zone. We could only manage a miserly quarter of the time we had in Sharks territory in their red zone. This wasn’t good enough.
2nd Half Stats
|14/18 (78)||Complete/Total Sets (%)||10/17 (59)|
|24:50||Time – Opposition Half||16:25|
|7:38||Time – Opposition 20||8:53|
|0||Goal Line Dropout||3|
I guess there are some positives to take out of the second half. We won 16 – 6, our time in the Sharks red zone was better against the time we had in the Sharks territory. But the completion rate was very poor. It was ridiculous to win the half with such a poor completion rate.
This could be a copy and paste job from early rounds. Barring our last 6 mins we were terrible in attack. Nothing really too much to report there if you watched the game. Again, don’t let the final score fool you. In the end the Sharks looked gassed and really didn’t commit to defence, they were trying not to let Parramatta score and were retreating in those last final minutes rather then attacking with their defence.
Eels – 1467m from 148 runs (9.91m per run) – 3 Line Breaks
Sharks – 1576m from 165 runs (9.55m per run) – 4 Line Breaks
The Eels gave their opponents too many extra sets. The Sharks had an extra 14 sets to attack our line. Our right side was exposed more times than not in this game as Cronulla hammered this side, especially in the first half. Poor defensive reads from both Jennings brothers saw the Sharks score 2 tries and they were really unlucky not to score more on this side to be honest. Something the Eels coaches need to sure up as quick as possible.
Early in the match, the Eels middle was a bit vulnerable, but that tightened up as the game went on and really I think the Sharks just hammered their attack down our right side as it was producing results.
Our line speed was pretty poor and we didn’t win many rucks either which is crucial.
Daniel Alvaro was superb in defence with 48 tackles and only 1 miss and 2 ineffective tackles. Not sure if Daniel picked up an injury but he was rarely seen in the second half.
|#||Name||Missed Tackles||Ineffective Tackles|
Eels – 392
Sharks – 306
Missed Tackles/Ineffective Tackles:
Eels – 20 missed / 23 ineffective
Sharks – 25 missed / 26 ineffective
Eels – 90.1%
Sharks – 85.7%
Penalties and Errors:
Eels – 6
Sharks – 9
Eels – 13
Sharks – 8
The Eels penalty count was pretty good, but it’s where we are giving the penalties that kills us. It’s either a piggy back penalty to get the Sharks out of their own territory or penalties well within kicking range to score points against us.
The Eels played much of their game between the 10 metres lines. Our forwards just couldn’t get any decent territory and this showed in our attack. Working hard to get out of our own territory would have been a Sharks game plan and slowing the play the ball down was effective from the Sharks as well.
The Sharks had us playing from deep within our territory and used it to great effect. The Eels only had 1 set restart in the Sharks 20 metre area. This was a game where we did not build any pressure at all.
Really this game isn’t all doom and gloom as parts of this game showed we can attack. Yes, the majority of the game reminded us of how we started the season, but in the end, we didn’t really give up. Even though our attack was poor, you still had a feeling that the effort was there and that the game could have turned at any moment. More patience was needed at times. The players need to remember that you don’t need to score off every play.
Yours in Blue and Gold.
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.