The bad news today? More of those depressing dark skies. The good news? A monster day of footy is scheduled out at Kellyville Park with all three grades of the Junior Representatives taking on the Illawarra Steelers with the Jersey Flegg to then follow against the St George Illawarra Dragons. TCT will be there from 9:45AM to bring you all the coverage as the Tarsha Gale and Harold Matthews continue to build towards their respective finals campaigns.
1. Debbie Doueihi
5. Alysha Bell
3. Petesa Lio
4. Tamerah Leati
18. Jacinta Tui
6. Tallara Bamblett
7. Rosemarie Beckett
8. Chelsea Steele
9. Ashlee Pottinger
10. Ruby-Jean Kennard (c)
11. Katalina Vave
12. Kyanna Lokeni
13. Summah Terare
14. Kasey Quye
15. Melenuku’o’Akau’ola Lauala
16. Lei-Lani Tua
20. Emily Waters
Parramatta to kick off in the Tarsha Gale. Running away from Eels HQ in the first half. Terrific start for the ladies as the kickoff hits the deck and takes a kick towards the in-goals. It catches the corner post for a drop out.
Ruby-Jean Kennard heeds the call for the first run. Parra build from right to left and seemingly have the numbers but the ball movement isn’t as crisp as needed and the Steelers arrive in time to save a try. The Eels head back infield to set up the last but Rosemarie Beckett is caught for the turnover.
Stinging defence from the Eels traps the Steelers 10m off their goal line on hte last but their clearing kick is a very handy one. It finds the turf and runs away from Debbie Doueihi to force the Eels to start this set inside their own half. An early penalty changes that though as it puts the home team firmly on the attack.
Lovely ball playing from Rosemarie Beckett! It nearly puts Doueihi over as the fullback sweeps down the left. She had Tamerah Leati on her left but opted to take on the fullback herself and is wrapped up. Kennard and Pottingers nearly storm over and on the last the Eels kick to the right where the ball is claimed by the Blue & Gold but the cover defence arrives in time again to save the try. Credit to the Steelers, they are desperate in defence.
The visitors get a relieving penalty in return as the Eels are caught inside the 10m on defence.
Good footy from both teams as Illawarra get their first proper possession of the game. Doueihi takes the clearing kick on the full and the Eels begin to work it out of their red zone. The Steelers are up for the task and force Parramatta to kick from inside 40m. Beckett duly obliges but consecutive ruck penalties in the next set leads to the referee giving the Eels a caution.
Like Illawarra before them, Parramatta put up a strong front on their goal line. The Steelers play from left to right and then back to the posts before kicking to their right edge. The ball is played at by the Eels and deflects out over the dead ball line for a drop out but the Steelers turn it over shortly in the resultant set.
Another tough possession through the ruck follows for the Eels as their middles try to punch it through the very willing defence of Illawarra. Both teams are right up to this arm wrestle as Beckett completes the set with a clearing kick. Although the Steelers have the field position they squander it with a booming kick that sails well dead.
Gee Summah Terare is fearless. She has been a terrier in defence and lays a cracking shot on the kick chase. It sets the tone for the set as the Eels swarm and eventually force the error!
Scrum centrefield from 35m out. Eels put some cloak and daggers tactics to the play and bait the Steelers to break early. Differential penalty. Left spread as Beckett plays to Jacinta Tui. The right edge of the Steelers continues to be up to the challenge as they wrap up Tui but Ruby-Jean Kennard it too strong and too powerful closer to the uprights! The captain storms over for the opening points in a thrilling clash between two very good teams!
Try scored by Ruby-Jean Kennard. Conversion successful by Alysha Bell.
Eels lead 6-0
Good take on the squib kick from Lokeni. Two passes left to Ruby for a settler as the Eels punch it through the ruck again with Terare. Illawarra hit back with some good defence on the next tackle but Pottingers rights the ship with a strong run. Parra put in an attacking bomb down their right that the Steelers want nothing to do with. It is allowed to bounce and in the frantic scramble for the ball the Eels come away with it and a reset on the tackle count.
They hammer the right edge short side but the defensive standards in this game continute to be set at an incredibly high bar. Illawarra turn the home team away and force the ball to be shifted to the opposite edge where again the Eels can’t find a channel. Beckett kicks on the last but the chasers are offside and Illawarra get the free ride out of their red zone.
A second penalty, a contentious one for a strip, builds momentum for the visitors but the Eels swiftly arrest it as they force an error in the ruck. As both teams get thorugh their following possesions it is the Eels who gain the ascendancy with a penalty on the last. Kennard rolls it forwards and slips a nifty offload to put the Eels into Illawarra territory. Simple but effective stuff as Parra drive it up the guts then take it left to Becketto on the last. Lovely little grubber from the half! It draws an error from the Illawarra winger and a scrum feed 10m out. Alas the Steelers sneak one under the ref’s guard on the first tackle with a cheeky little strip that is ruled a lost ball.
Turns out the ball does not lie as the Steelers are immediately pulled up for a forward pass from their own scrum win. Parramatta will pack their second scrum from 10m.
Just great footy from the win as Bamblett holds it up beautifully for Petesa Lio who flies onto the pill but the defence is every bit as good as the offence! Beckett produces another Illawarra error from a kick and the Eels will feed the scrum with just under 30sec left in the half.
Doueihi does very well to reel in the pass on the first tackle and with time enough for one play Beckett produces some magic! She has been playing out the back for the entire opening half but she goes to the line with the ball in both hands and asks all sort of questions. The defenders hold off on her, wary of the option to Doueihi out the back, and Rosemarie reads the hesitation as she knifes through!
Try scored by Rosemarie Beckett. Conversion unsuccessful by Alysha Bell.
Eels lead 10-0
Parramatta Eels 10 lead the Illawarra Steelers 0
The Eels will receive the ball in the second half. Ruby-Jean Kennard skittles defenders on the opening charge and draws the penalty! She is up in a flash to tap-and-go and plunders a further 12m in a sizzling start to the half. Parramatta surge into the red zone and take the ball to their right but Bamblett is cut down. Last tackle now and the service from Quye finds Doueihi on the bounce and the fullback recovers to get a kick away but the Steelers clean it up on the full.
Aggressive defence pins Illawarra deep in their half and the pressure extendeds to a charge down the last. It ricochets back towards the goal line but the Steelers win the race for the ball and get a fresh set. A string of contentious calls put Illawarra in pole position to score their opening points of the game. Parramatta defend strongly on their line from but a momentary lapse proves costly. The Eels load up to their right anticipating the big shift on the last but the Illawarra dummy half Salma Nour takes a crack herself instead and is able to dive over.
Try scored by Salma Nour. Conversion successful.
Illawarra trail 6-10
An error from the kickoff! Parramatta with the chance to reply and they do it in similar fashion to Illawarra! Following a centreing charge from Kyanna Lokeni, Beckett takes on the line and is pulled down short. Jacinta Tui wants a crack at the try line from dummy half in the wake of her half’s run and she pushes her way over. Great response from the Eels.
Try scored by Jacinta Tui. Conversion successful by Alysha Bell.
Eels lead 16-6
Another error from Illawarra as they kick out on the full from the kick off and the Eels are starting to dial it up! A right edge play run through the hands of Bamblett cuts the impressive Illawarra defence to shreds. The Parramatta five-eighth puts in on a platter for her powerhouse centre Petesa Lio. She explodes through the line and throws a great final pass to Alysha Bell at the last line. Bell makes the conversion in hellish conditions from the sideline!
Try scored by Alysha Bell. Conversion successful by Alysha Bell.
Eels lead 22-6
Parramatta have found another gear in these last 10min. No error from Illawarra on the kickoff but instead the Eels just rumble downfield and kick chase pressure produces another turn over! Plenty of patience from the home team in the following set as they let Bamblett work things down the right. Again the Steelers defend their line extremely well. Back to Beckett on the last who puts in on the felt inside the in-goals but the Eels kick chase miscue the play for the ball and accidentally boot it dead.
The game finally settles down as both teams trade sets. Parramatta have the territorial edge but a 7-tackle set to Illawarra lets them work into Parramatta’s half. Bell defuses the attacking kick beautifully and the Eels get to work rucking it out. Some nice lead up work from Pottinger puts Leati between defenders and the outside back earns a penalty as she is mugged in the ruck.
Steele works the ball right as the Eels play again that way to Lokeni. Back left to Bamblett who passes to Beckett who in turn releases Vave. She carries defenders over the line and is barely held up! It brings up the last tackle and the Eels roll it along the ground down their left but it is well taken in the front line by the defence.
Take a bow Jacinta Tui! A superb one-on-one strips deprives the Steelers of any chance to build an attacking set inside Parramatta’s half. Rolling downfield the Eels switch play up with Bamblett sliding down the left edge and dabbing a neat kick in behind. The Steelers do very well to recover it inside the field of play before a penalty gets them out of trouble.
Another penalty for a hit off the ball gifts Illawarra a late chance to improve the margin on the scoreboard and they capitalise in the next set with two Parramatta defenders left strewn on the ground near the ruck. The ref lets play go on and again the Steelers dive over from dummy half to score their second try of the game.
Try scored by the Illawarra Steelers. Conversion successful.
Steelers trail 12-22
Bell has a wicked way with the kickoffs and nearly forces a line drop out with this one. Illwarra save it in the nick of time. Simple set with barely any time on the clock and put up a midfield bomb. It is allowed to bounce and a Steelers’ chaser arrives first but loses it forwards as the defence gets there a fraction later. Brings an end to a very high quality encounter in the Tarsha Gale!
Parramatta Eels 22 defeat the Illawarra Steelers 12
1. Mohamed Alameddine
2. Noah Totoa
3. Michael Gabrael
4. Zaidas Muagututia
5. Dominic Farrugia
6. Blaize Talagi
7. Lorenzo Talataina
8. Sam Tuivati
9. Matthew Arthur
10. Jacob John
11. Charbel Chehade
12. Jordan Faleono
13. Kobi Hurford
14. Lachlan Coinakis
15. Sebastian Piukala
16. Jordan Uta
17. Jezaiah Funa-Luta
18. Dylan Brettle
Illawarra are kicking off in the first half. Parramatta are running towards Eels HQ.
A really nice take from Jordan Faleono on a nasty swirling kickoff. Good ruck work from Hurford sets up an early kick for Matthew Arthur and the rake finds touch deep in Illawarra territory. The Steelers reply with an early kick of their own but it isn’t struck anywhere near as sweetly and Alameddine claims in 10m short of half way.
Hurford and John truck it up to put the Eels in position for an attacking kick but the set fizzles out as the home team are trapped on the last.
Gee that was courageous stuff from Mohamed Alameddine. A mistruck bombs falls in no-man’s land and takes an Illawarra bounce but he just flies into the contest for the ball and makes it his own! A penalty two tackles later has Parramatta on the attack.
Tuivati first and then Hurford for the opening runs. Right now for the Eels to Talagi before they come back left to big Sam Tuivati who is too big and too strong as Kobi Hurford feeds him a short ball near the line. He bashes his way over for the first points of the game.
Try scored by Sam Tuivati. Conversion successful by Mohamed Alameddine.
Eels lead 6-0
The kickoff is well taken by Dom Farrugia and gets it back out to the 20m line. Second phase ball has the Eels rocking and rolling but time is very quickly blown off for a severely injured Steeler. He is in a real bad way and I think the referee has made a very good call in spite of the fact the Eels were on the front foot.
Oh man this is looking ugly. Both teams have retreated to their respective in-goals and the officials have left the field while trainers from both teams attend the fallen Steeler. You just hope that in spite of it all the injury isn’t a severe one but the response has been as serious as you will see.
He is stretchered off very, very carefully and everyone at TCT is hoping for the best.
Play finally resumes after a long hiatus and the tempo has been lost by the Eels as they immediately cough it up. The Steelers too are out of sync as they drop it before the line.
Parramatta take it up a notch in the following set. Strong runs, crisp ball movement – this set has it all before Blaize Talagi is in the thick of it again. Playing down the right he holds it up perfectly to put Alameddine through a gap and his fullback pins his ears back for the line to touch it down for four points!
Try scored by Mohamed Alameddine. Conversion successful by Mohamed Alameddine.
Eels lead 12-0
The Eels are scoring faster than I can type. They go back-to-back as their forwards take full control of the game. Charbel Chehade bumps and spins and carries defenders for big metres and the backrower gets his dues shortly after as Arthur plays left on the goal line to his edge. Chehade steps off his left and gets across the sliding defence to burrow over for an easy try!
Try scored by Charbel Chehade. Conversion successful by Mohamed Alameddine.
Eels lead 18-0
Big in-roads for Parramatta as they play right but it might have cost them their captain Talagi who is bery slow to get up. Talataina keeps the team on the front foot and ends up being too unselfish! He bursts through the front line down the left edge and has a chance to go himself but he looks to pass to Chehade in support but a defender gets between them and intercepts it! Big play.
It proves to be hugely important for the visitors as a lucky 6-again call and a penalty sees them march downfield. Parramatta’s right edge is playing too compact on the goal line and a very sweet cutout pass gets Tom Kirk outside Dom Farrugia for the try.
Try scored by Tom Kirk. Conversion successful by James Walsh.
Illawarra trail 6-18
Talagi has tried to push through the ankle injury but has finally come off. The Steelers complete a strong set after points as Farrugia claims a tough kick just inside the field of play. Really tough work from the outside backs for Parramatta is rewarded with a penalty.
Ball play from Chedade to Tuivati starts the next set before Arhtur slices through! He steps the fullback but is brought down inches short! Right now as the Steelers scramble. An errant pass is scooped up by Muagututia and settles it down. Talataina stabs a kick into the goal line. It is deflected by a defender and quickly regathered by Lorenzo who immediately finds Sam Tuivati who smashes over for an early double!
Try scored by Sam Tuivati. Conversion successful by Mohamed Alameddine.
Eels lead 24-6
Oh gee that was a mess. Jordan Uta is under this one but gets panicked looking back at who else might be pushing up for it. It ends up spilling off his chin.
Big contact from Tuivati and Hurford early in this set. Steelers paly leftfrom there but Faleono is in a good spot to kill it. Strong defence is finished off by Zaidas who gobbles up the grubber kick on the line.
Tough work from Gabrael gets the Eels pushing forwards and Muagututia gets in behind him for good metres. The swirling clearing kick is lost backwards by Toby Rumble but the home team concedes a cheap penalty to flip the field and put Illawarra on the attack.
The Steelers nearly cross down their left edge again with some nice ball playing but the cover defence arrive in time to cut Tom Kirk down. It looks like the contact may hve been high though and I think Jordan Uta is called out and put on report.
Gee that is some good defence. The Steelers have a full set with 2min left on the clock but they throw haymakers at the Eels on both sides and they stand tall before guiding a grubber kick over the dead ball line. Just 30sec left now but the Eels lose it coming out of the half. Deary me. Still, thankfully nothing comes of it as Parra survive the crossfield kick and see out the half.
Parramatta Eels 24 lead the Illawarra Steelers 6
Eels kicking off in the second half. Oh my lord. BOBBY JOHN! He has buried a man there with a thunderous tackle that jolts the ball loose. What a tone setter to start the second stanza.
Nice run from Zaidas off the scrum win. Back left with Piukala as the Eels set up for the left edge play. It is executed really well but the Steelers just defend it better as Alameddine is pulled down short of the line. No kick to end this set as Uta has a crack as the line under the posts and is tackled for the turnover.
Oh what has happened there? Arthur has made a tackle and plays goes on but he has remained entangled on the ground. It escalates as both teams close in on the brouhaha. Arthur and Alameddine are called out and spoken to before both are sent back. I don’t think I have eveer seen that. The Steelers will get the penalty but they fail to find touch! Of course it finds Alameddine!
Tensions are on the edge here with several big collisions around the middle. The Eels go left as Talataina rifles a cutout pass to Gabrael but the jamming defence arrives as the ball does and forces the mistake. Jacob John is helped off with a shoulder injury.
Tuivati crunches a runner but expansive play from the Steelers opens up some space down their left edge on the next play. Parramatta remain composed though and let the set peter out with an error from the visitors.
Dom Farrugia has a nice carry but is pinged for an offensive penalty. Ref said he didn’t get to his feet there and while correct there easily could have been a penalty blown first for ruck spoiling. Tough break.
Full attacking possession for the Steelers but the goal line defence of Parramatta has been excellent today. The set concludes with a bomb spilled by the Steelers.
Bit of redemption for Farrugia who provides a terrific carry up the guts and a fast PTB. No panic from the Blue & Gold as they work the Steelers over and force a drop out from the boot of Talataina.
Alameddine looks to have a double to his name as he slides through in the next set but the referee quickly signals a penalty for an obstruction. It ends up being a 12pt turnaround as the backrower Isaac Laughton makes a big break through the right edge of the Eels. He slips a pass to support but cover defence from Parra bats it back – badl uck though as it still finds a Steeler. The play continues from there as they continue to link up and eventually touch it down under the posts.
Try scored by Tom Kirk. Conversion successful by James Walsh.
Illawarra trail 12-24
That is inspirational stuff from Talataina! Thel ittle half has just smoked his opposite with a booming hit that drops him to the ground. He follows his hit up to complete the tackle and knocks the ball out!
Hurford and Uta dig deep into the line to set up an attacking kick. It is sent to the left where the Steelers knock it forwards. Zaidus swoops onto the loose ball and tries to dive over in the corner but it bundled out but clearly no advantage for the Eels.
Parramatta load up to the left from a centrefield scrum but it is smoke and mirrors. The intention all along was to give Gabrael the 2-on-2 look down the short side and he takes it to the house. Explosive first step, a little in and away and he is over! Cracking individual try.
Try scored by Michael Gabrael. Conversion unsuccessful by Mohamed Alameddine.
Eels lead 28-12
Dang, a loose pass from dummy half undoes some excellent ruck work from Funa-Luta and Tuivati. Illawarra have to score here pretty much. Big set in the context of the game.
The Eels stand resolute once again as Alameddine cleans up the grubber kick and stays in the field of play.
Gabrael and Hurford give Talataina clearance to hoof it downfield and he obliges but a penalty for a crusher tackle puts the Steelers right back on the attack.
A punishing hit from Gabrael and stellar work from Alameddine define another great defensive set before the Eels unleash a counterpunch. Piukala surges down the right edge and is eventually brought down before Gabrael follows him up with a powerful charge and offload that gets Alameddine into space. The fullback backs his own pace to beat his opposite and he seemingly has the try but he trips himself up and the very last and loses the ball. Equal parts comical and unfortunate there.
Trick shot! Steelers kick ahead from the scrum and catch the Eels lacking. They win the race to the ball and a couple of tackles later their centre James Walsh, easily one of their best today, punches it in for what I hope is a consolation try.
Try scored by James Walsh. Conversion successful by James Walsh.
Illawarra trail 28-18
Obstruction from the kickoff for the Steelers. How often do you see that? Eels penalty and they tap and go. Hurford nearly crosses with some excellent footwork in front of the posts and practically forces the penalty from the PTB. Uta takes a strong run and absorbs a really big hit. The ball squirts out and the ref signals a strip. Tap and go again as Hurford runs to the right. He frees up his right arm and flicks the backhanded offload to Charbel Chehade who dots it down with ease!
Try scored by Charbel Chehade. Conversion successful by Mohamed Alameddine.
Eels lead 34-18
Time enough left for a short kickoff but Dylan Brettle is all over it! That will do us today as the Harold Matthews continue to build in the business end of the season.
Parramatta Eels 34 defeat the Illawarra Steelers 18
1. Freeman Forsythe
4. Cody Parry
3. Declan Murray
11. Charlie Guymer
5. Suliasi Aho
6. Terrence Lafai
7. Riley Lack
8. Lance Fualema
9. Jacob Davis
10. Daniel Readon
13. Saxon Pryke
12. Domenic De Stradis
19. Raffaele De Stradis
20. Mark Simon
15. Markis Atoa
16. Ibrahim Fakhri
17. Joshua Alzahim
18. Vlado Jankovic
The Eels will kickoff in the final game of the Junior Representatives triple header.
Reasonable opening set by the Steelers as they venture down their left. The Eels hold on though and force the kick, one that Forsythe does very well to bring in considering the swirling breeze. A penalty then follows to the Eels to put them on the fornt foot. Pryke carts it up before Lack plays out the back to Forsythe down the right edge. Back left as the halves combine with Lack running it to the line. The set is completed with a bomb to the right corner but a penalty relieves any pressure on the Steelers.
Illawarra are dialed in on Parramatta’s left edge and make a line break through it. The scramble saves the day metres short of the line but the Steelers are lined up to the left on the last. They don’t play through the hands thankfully and roll the grubber instead which allows Guymer to clean it up.
An error from Davis out of dummy half puts the blow torch right back onto the Eels. A thunderous tackle from Guymer starts off this defensive set. The Steelers go back to their right but for at least this set the Blue & Gold seem to have it figured out and then hold firm. The turnover on tackles comes when Illawarra try to run it against Parra’s right edge on the last.
Simple but effective stuff in return from the Eels. Stuck deep in their own half they punch it through the ruck and kick early. Lack’s clearing kick finds the grass and takes a turn towards the goal line, getting the Eels back into the arm wrestle.
Gee that is a tough penalty on the Eels. Good kick pressure on the kicker is followed up by an arm wrapping tackle but the referee has ruled it an illegal play. It leads up a full set on Parra’s goal line but they don’t need it as they cross down their right early in the process. Thier backrower Dylan Egan I believe runs a good overs line against the jamming defence and finds the gap. He then links up with support for the opening points.
Try scored by the Illawarra Steelers. Conversion unsuccessful.
Illawarra lead 4-0
Steady footy from both teams after the opening points. Freeman Forsythe defuses a very tough bomb and then somehow pinches 10m despite a blockade of chasers around him. It gives a little juice to the set and the Eels surge on it. Daniel Readon blows through the middle for a huge rain and a penalty on the last tees Parra up to return serve on the scoreboard.
Like the Steelers they don’t need the fullset as Jacob Davis jumps out of dummy half near the posts before turning Lance Fualema back inside. The big bopper finds the space between the ruck defenders for an important try!
Try scored by Lance Fualema. Conversion successful by Riley Lack.
Eels lead 6-4
Both teams trade sets following Parramatta’s try before an ugly incident leads to an Eels’ penalty. Cody Parry climbs the ladder to catch an attacking bomb and the chasers run underneath him cutting his legs out. It didn’t seem malicious but the end result is nasty as he lands heavily on his shoulder. It goes on report.
A second penalty follows for a crusher as Parra move downfield by touchfinders. The Eels look to get expansive early in the next possession with an early shift to Cody Parry on the right wing. He beats his opposite with some nice power through contact but the cover defence chase him down and get him into touch.
The ball finds its way back to the Eels as line speed pressures an error around the ruck. A powerful charge from Saxon Pryke leads to a penalty and puts Parramatta back on the attack. They start the next set with a sweeping play to their right but the Steelers read it well. Back left to the posts with Dom De Stradis I think. Good pace now! The Eels play fast and flat to Guymer down the right. He barrels into two defenders right on the line and somehow flicks a sensational offload to Cody Parry for a try!
Try scored by Cody Parry. Conversion successful by Riley Lack.
Eels lead 12-4
What a quality carry from Markis Atoa! He has put defenders on his back and dragged them for a ride. It is the platform for an excellent set after points as Parra muster downfield and get to a tidy kick.
Big counterpunch from the Steelers as they bust through Parramatta’s right edge this time. The cover defence swarm in but so too do the support players as pass after pass finds a Steeler. Somehow the defenders keep up with it and make the tackle metres short of the line. Alas, the burden of that long developing play takes its toll and the Steelers find numbers in a double switch of play from left to right and back to the left.
Try scored by the Illawarra Steelers. Conversion unsuccessful.
Illawarra trail 8-12
A penalty for sloppy ruck defence gifts the Steelers a chance to impact the scoreboard again before oranges. They start the set with play down their right before the swing to the left comes with their five-eighth. He runs it to the line and is well tackled, losing it to my eyes but the ref rules a strip.
A great tackle by Lafai saves a try as he takes a backrower ball and all. The cover defence then makes a big play down the left as they catch thr winger Ethan Cliff stepping back inside. A penalty is blown but no sin bin called and surprisingly the Steelers want the tap with only enough time for a single play. Parramatta turn them away and half time is blown.
Parramatta Eels 12 lead the Illawarra Steelers 8
Mark Simon gets us underway in the second half. Atoa follows him up with a good run and the set is completed with a clearing kick that finds the grass.
A driving tackle from Simon and Davis pushes the Steelers a good 10m backwards and they need a good kick. Their halfback finds it as he sends Forsythe backwards to retrieve the ball. Very solid set from the Eels as they work the ruck and find touch via Lack 10m off the Steeler’s goal line.
You need to back those sort of sets up with good defence and the Eels have been inconsistent in that regard today. Their right edge is picked apart again as Jack Bostock makes another linebreak down that side. He uses his inside men as he comes to Forsythe at the last line and finds Ethan Cliff on the inside.
Try scored by Ethan Cliff. Conversion successful.
Illawarra lead 14-12
A favourable break for Parramatta in the set after points as the Steelers overcook their kick. Sulasi Aho guides it over the dead ball line for a 7 \-tackle set.
Jacob Davis is unlucky not to earn a penalty with a dart from daummy half. Pryke and Simon run in his wake and a miscommunication on the last leaves the ball with Josh Alzahim. He fends the first defender to come his way but is quickly wrapped up for the turnover.
Better defence from the Eels now as Guymer plugs up the right edge and like Parramatta before them, the Steelers are caught with the ball on the last.
Useful penalty for Parra. Play resumes 15m inside Illawarra’s half. Aho with the tap and go there. Lovely ball playing from the big men! Ibrahim Fakhri digs deep into the line infront of the posts and feeds the short ball to Mark Simon who steams over! Excellent strike back from the Eels.
Try scored by Mark Simon. Conversion successful by Riley Lack.
Eels lead 18-14
This is turning into an entertaining clash. Both teams right up to the task today. Eels and Steelers go set for set with heavy defence dished out by both sides.
Illawarra starting to push ahead in the battle for field position. Just as the Eels look dead and buried following a defensive avalanche that traps them 10m on their line. Lack miscues his clearance kick. Pressure from Guymer leads to a dropped ball that Dan Readon scoops up! What an insane turn in this game! Readon plays it perfectly as he holds it up against the cover defence to find Pryke who thunders through a couple of defenders before he is pulled down. To the right now as the Eels look to strip the Steelers for numbers but an errant pass kills the advantage. Cody Parry scoops it up and then displays some outstanding leg drive to push and push the defenders back right until the goal line! It is pivotal as well because Freeman Forsythe smells an opportunity from dummy half in the fallout of that run and dives over for a huge score!
Try scored by Freeman Forsythe. Conversion unsuccessful by Riley Lack.
Eels lead 22-14
Oh no. They have been so good about getting to their kick after points today but they fail to do so this time around. What al et off though as the Steelers immediately return the favour! Wowza.
A bizarre sequence of play seemingly results in an Illawarra try following a clear knock on. The referee allows play to carry on to an eventual try but his touch judge updates him with the tip that it was dropped. Very odd stuff.
Bit of push and shove late into this contest. Lance Fualema cops a rough call in which he apparently gets hands to an offload at his shins and some argey bargey follows. Both teams get a general caution.
Guymer with another great read and tackle down the right edge. Gee that should have been a penalty. Very similar to the Parry incident in the first half but Aho has his legs taken out from under him by a Steeler occupying the space under him. He loses the ball and the referee rules knock on.
Sterling goal line defence in the next set for the Eels as they hold on and volleyball spike a grubber kick dead with 3min left on the clock.
What a goal line stand! The finals might be outside their reach but the SG Ball have stood tall today. They repel the Steelers throughout the full set and catch them on the last for the turnover.
One of the De Stradis boys, I will hazard it was Dom, bursts into the backfield! Terrific carry but his pass to Forsythe is batted down by the fullback. They desperately want one last try but the Steelers hold on. BIg boil over here and a terrific win.
Parramatta Eels 22 defeat the Illawarra Steelers 14