The Cumberland Throw

Stats That Matta – Rounds 6 & 7, 2021: Eels Defeat Raiders And Broncos






Eels 35 defeated Raiders 10

Eels 46 defeated Broncos 6

What a fantastic last two matches from the Eels. After a disastrous outing against the Dragons, the Eels have piled on the points in their last two matches against the Raiders and Broncos.

The conditions in both games were poles apart with cool conditions in the Nation’s Capital and stifling hot conditions in Australia’s Top End.

These matches have demonstrated that the Eels can produce in trying conditions and are able to grind out a game in any condition. And let’s not omit beating the Storm game in torrential rain as well.

In both games, the Eels had 54% of possession and saw the Eels complete 35 of their sets. In the Canberra game, completions were 35 from 41 at 85% and against the Broncos was 35 sets from 44 at 80%.

It seems that the constant over this season is that if the Eels can maintain a completion rate over 80% then the 2 points will come their way.

Both games saw the Eels in enemy territory for over 44 minutes. To be specific, 44minutes 22secs against the Raiders and for the Broncos game it was a tick over 49mins.

Time spent in opposition 20 metre areas was just under 20mins against Canberra and 24 and a quarter minutes against the Broncos.


The score lines indicate that the Eels attack is humming along just fine. But I would say Brad Arthur was none too pleased with some of the attacking options the Eels put up. The Canberra game saw what they can do, especially in second half when the attack finally clicked after a torrid first half. But against the Broncos, especially in that middle part of the second half, some of the options just were a bit head scratching.

Can that be put down to the conditions and very tired thinking or just taking it a little too lightly and not showing enough respect for the opposition? Something B.A. would have thought about and watched on his flight back from Darwin.

Both games again saw similarities in our attacking figures. Metres gained in both games saw the Eels make 2341 metres and 2395 metres respectively. Post Contact Metres also were close with 543 against the Raiders and 578 against the Broncos.

In the running metres against the Raiders, Blake Ferguson heading the list with 178 running metres and shout outs to RCG (163), Papali’i (149), N. Brown (139) from our forwards and Gutherson (141) and Sivo (109) from our backs.

Against the Broncos, Sivo topped the count with 196 running metres with his wing partner Blake Ferguson with 182 metres. Our backs ate up the run metres. Gutherson again scored highly with 171 running metres, Tommy Opacic with 108 and Dylan Brown with 125 metres.

Our forwards played their part in tough conditions. Oregan Kaufusi topped the forwards with 136 run metres off the bench and Isaiah Papali’I 129 running metres.

In total the Eels running metres against the Broncos was 1789 metres against the Broncos 1150 running metres. Massive effort.

Heat maps for our running and hit ups show a bit of a difference in the style and flow of the game.

This map shows the game against the Raiders.

We need to play our game from our own end to grind out a victory. The first half would be a great contributor to this as the game was manly played in the middle third of the field. The Eels really needed to grind out territory against the Raiders.

Whereas the map below shows our game against the Broncos.


The Eels just had a magnificent roll on all game. This would be a very pleasing graphic to the coaching staff. Nothing more really needs to be said in relation to this. Just a dominant display from the Eels.


Set Starts

Heat Map vs Raiders


Heat Map vs Broncos

One stat I really liked against the Broncos was the 5 line drop outs. This showed the level of pressure that the Eels exerted on the Broncos defence.



In looking at the effectiveness of the Eels attack and points scored, let’s not forget that there are two sides to a game of footy. The points differential gained from these two matches was as much about the few points conceded as the total scored.

Against the Raiders, the Eels made 337 tackles with 25 missed and 11 ineffective. Giving us tackle effective rate of 90.3%. Against the Broncos was 290 tackles made, 28 missed and 18 ineffective with a effective rate of 86.3%.

Top tacklers against the Raiders was Reed Mahoney with 53 tackles and 2 misses. Helped by Shaun Lane with 43, Nathan Brown with 39 and Papali’i with 37.

Against the Broncos, Mahoney was again top tackler with 41 tackles.


Final Thoughts

The last two games have seen the Eels put on a clinic against their opposition. In no means has it been an 80 minute performance and aspects of the game can be picked and scrutinised, but no doubt Brad Arthur will be very happy with the progress of his team.

I have been very critical with the addition of Bryce Cartwright. But I am happy to be proven wrong if he continues the form he showed last night.

Bryce’s game now needs to be a hard running edge runner instead of the ball player he once was. His attack looked great last night when he just ran the ball. Doing that is putting the defence in two minds as they are waiting for him to throw a silly offload or just crab across field.

The way that Brad Arthur has transformed his game will no doubt see Bryce become a fan favourite – though probably not as popular as Isaiah Papali’i.


Yours in Blue and Gold



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9 thoughts on “Stats That Matta – Rounds 6 & 7, 2021: Eels Defeat Raiders And Broncos

  1. BDon

    Tks Colmac. There are errors and there are errors, the cold count doesn’t always give a true picture, but as anindicator it does tell a story. Ive noticed that par is around 10.5 errors per game at present, I reckon this is up from pre-V’Landys. Anything single digit, would probably see you competitive. We are running at around 12 per game, but doing very well. Interestingly, the outlier was v St G where we recorded a quadruple bogey at around 15 ( one source said 14, another 16).

  2. Dday

    Thanks colmac. A couple of good wins although we now know Raiders are in a slump and Broncos are a hot mess. Good for the for and against but the heat maps are positive – we’ve kept our shape thru the middle. The eels are posting big metres and being played into form, here’s hoping we keep the formula going

    1. The Captain

      You could say the Raiders are in a slump because they played Penrith followed by us and they’ve copped a beating in confidence as well as had 2 energy sapping games which could have played into their loss this week.

      The Raiders are still not a bad team. A step below Penrith, Storm and Rabbits but still an impressive scalp.

      1. John Eel

        Captain all teams lose after playing the Eels.

        The only team that has bucked the trend was the Sharks. After playing the Eels they went on to defeat a Cowboys team who had not won their first game of the 2021 season.

  3. Colin Hussey

    So much for the rubbishing by many regarding Shawn Lane’s defense especially against the raiders.

  4. HamSammich

    “But against the Broncos, especially in that middle part of the second half, some of the options just were a bit head scratching.” Just on this Colmac I think I could see what we were trying to do.

    We were destroying them with our left edge attack, we know that works so what do we gain by continuing going down the left other than racking up the points? If we had continued going down the left I’ve no doubts we could’ve put on 60 they were that good. But our right side needs to work on their attacking combinations too and why not do it in a game where you’re already up by 30? Sure you can work on combinations on the training paddock but getting that real game experience is invaluable. I see it like field goals, I wish we’d do more of them even if we’re up by 30. The more you do it in the “meaningless” games I think it’ll be easier to do in games where the field goal will be the difference.

  5. John Eel

    Colmac against the Broncos you said we had 2,395 metres gained however later you said the Eels had 1789 running metres.

    What differentiates the two pieces of data? Does it have to do with the kicking?

    1. Colmac

      Hi John. Yeah that’s correct. Your total metres gained include your running metres, kick metres and kick for touch metres.

  6. Milo

    Both games we had good completions; defence was good and we had composure and some patience which is a key again next week against C’bury. We need to be patient and stick to our game plan; its simple but v effective and the completions will help us at the back end along with good defence.

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