The Cumberland Throw

Stats That Matta – Round 11, 2020: Parramatta Eels Defeat Wests Tigers

Round 11 – Thursday 23rd July, 2020 @ Bankwest Stadium

A close up of a logo Description automatically generated


A close up of a logo Description automatically generateddefeat


“Here we go again!”

How many of you were think those same thoughts after the opening couple of minutes last Thursday night? In fact, the opening 20 minutes seemed like the Eels were heading for a continuation of the previous week’s effort against Manly.

With that very soft first penalty leading in to the Tigers first try, déjà-vu seemed to be striking the minds of Eels and Tigers fans alike – although for very different reasons!

The Eels replied in the 10th minute with a Sivo try, but the Tigers hit straight back and then a penalty goal saw them cruising at 12 points to 4.

But cometh the man, cometh the moustache! A 55 metre effort from RCG brought the Eels back to life and from there they took control of the match.

A smart offload from new boy Andrew Davey and quick hands from Gutherson, saw Campbell-Gillard pour through a non-existent Tigers middle, and the big man ran what is apparently now 80 metres to score.

After the Eels drew level in the 25th minute, the Tigers just couldn’t keep up with the rampant Blue and Golds as they stamped their authority on the clash.

Led by Junior Paulo with 196 run metres off 20 runs and Campbell-Gillard with 234 run metres off 23 runs, the Eels weren’t headed again as they scored 22 unanswered points.

Keeping on with the RCG flavour, his running stats have been absolutely outstanding this year so far. Let’s have a look at those running stats for 2020.

Reagan Campbell-Gillard
Round Runs Run Metres
1 v Bulldogs 10 86
2 v Titans 9 70
3 v Broncos 18 194
4 v Sea Eagles 17 172
5 v Panthers 14 133
6 v Roosters 9 79
7 v Raiders 22 217
8 v Cowboys 20 200
9 v Knights 22 226
10 v Sea Eagles 28 272
11 v Tigers 23 234
Total 192 1883

Check out the Reg’s returns from his last five games – producing over 200 metres each time is just unbelievable. Only the best fullbacks would produce those figures, though such numbers from the custodians are mostly the result of kick returns.

In contrast, Reg’s stats are primarily in hit ups – doing the tough stuff in the middle. He’s sitting up at the top of that list for the buy of the season, and anyone who thinks otherwise just doesn’t know their rugby league.

Heat Map

As we have seen over the course of this year, the further the colours go into the our opposition’s half the better the Eels play. Although there was plenty of work in our own half as shown in red, the yellow stretched out well into this Tigers half and deep into their red zone. This is what Brad Arthur and his assistants would be wanting to see week in, week out.

Set Restarts

A much better looking set restart graphic than we saw last time against the Knights. The many restarts in the Tigers 20 metre area just piled on the pressure against the Tigers.

One match up I was interested in was the two young hookers – Reed Mahoney and Harry Grant.

Both players have been touted future Queensland Origin hookers, especially Harry Grant of late. Even though Reed has been slightly off the boil in the last few weeks, his overall form has been very solid and people in the know have been right in saying he wouldn’t go missing in a Maroon jumper.

Reed Mahoney
Possessions Runs Run Metres Passes Offloads Tackles Missed Tackles Errors
140 6 31 132 0 43 2 1
Harry Grant
Possessions Runs Run Metres Passes Offloads Tackles Missed Tackles Errors
112 12 103 104 0 63 4 1

Unfortunately, on this occasion you would have to say that Grant takes the chocolates over Reed. But in saying that, Reed is more focussed on distributing the ball to set the Eels go forward in motion. Both players do play a different style of game, but none the less they are as equally important to both attack and defence.

Our backs again made great metres with Gutherson and Blake Ferguson topped the running metres for our backs. No doubt Blake was missed against the Sea Eagles as his kick returns are so valuable to the team and his hit ups are just as vital when our forwards are feeling a bit tired. Let’s not mention that Fergo hasn’t scored a ‘meaty’ this season and now holds the ‘gong’ for the best ‘no try’ in history. He is getting close, and once he finally does score, watch the flood gates open for him.

Gutherson ran for 124 metres and Blake Ferguson chipped in with 144 metres. Waqa Blake made a sensational 110 running metres, bringing him back to form. Over my last few posts, I have been saying that Waqa’s involvement in attack was less than ideal. This is a game he should look back on and think “this is how my normal game should be.” Well done Waqa.

Our halves played with patience and style. Again, Dylan Brown breaks the 100 metres run mark with 105 running metres and Mitchell Moses is back with the long kicking game kicking for 574 metres.

Moses absence had been telling recently, especially in the Eels kicking game. Even though Jai Field filled in really well, we just didn’t have that kicking game that Moses produces. We need to pin opposition teams down in their own 20 metre area to pile on the pressure as our kick chase game is second to none.

So all in all it wasn’t a bad effort but there are, of course, aspects to work on.

We again fell short of playing out the full 80 minutes which was disappointing, but to steer the ship right and get a roll on like we did continued a familiar 2020 trend. It demonstrates that not only we can match it physically but mentally as well. It should shut up a certain Channel 9 commentator (“no it won’t“ – Sixties) who said the Eels don’t have the mentality to win a comp.

We now face our greatest rivals, the Bulldogs, on Sunday. After a 10 day break the Eels will be fresh and ready to rip in at ANZ Stadium.

Let’s hope we don’t see what happened yesterday in the Knights v Bulldogs game, when the favoured Knights took the result for granted. In the NRL, if you’ve already mentally banked the two points, there’s a chance that like the Knights, you’ll get your pants pulled down and spanked by a hungrier opponent.

Yours in Blue and Gold

  • Colmac


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John Eel

RCG is an outstanding buy. Both in his football ability and in how he enhances our cap

I believed from the start that he would be a good buy. However the outcome of his performances are beyond my expectations


I suspected a big season based on his training, but like you, he’s exceeding those expectations.


Always enjoy the analysis Comac. Heat maps are a positive sign and are hopefully reproducible. Agree grant took the honours, he’s their best player by far. RCG posting tremendous metres but equally doing so many hit ups – just constantly testing the line


DDay, that’s the big thing isn’t. The glory runs are in attack in the 20. The hard slog is hitting it up from deep in your own territory, which Reg is doing.


Very happy with the win and great read Colmac. This was a v tough game and Wests were v good i thought; some finishing let them down but we hung in there which was great, and also after losing Matterson. Wests also lost some players. It was a good game to watch and we did v well.


It was a very physical clash mate. Tigers were ripping in early. They’ll miss Grant next year, no doubt.

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