NRL Team List
Round 24, 8:00PM Friday 11th August, The Gabba
The Eels kept their season alive with a come-from-behind victory against the Dragons last week but they will get run off the sprawling spread of the Gabba if they put in a repeat performance this week. Parramatta’s clumsy efforts against the Dragons will not achieve anywhere near the same results against the premiership heavyweight that is the Brisbane Broncos.
Brad Arthur continues to tinker with his left edge in the absences of Shaun Lane and Maika Sivo. Out this week is the rookie Arthur Miller-Stephen. Ryan Matterson goes back to his specialist bench role. In comes Andrew Davey to play in the backrow, Daejarn Asi to play centre with Bailey Simonsson pushing out to the left wing. It isn’t exactly an elegant reshuffle and while I understand concerns about the potential matchup between Miller-Stephen and Selwyn Cobbo but Daejarn had his own struggles in defence at five-eighth and is now parachuted into the most technical defensive position in the backline.
Damned if you do and damned if you don’t, evidently.
Brendan Hands is back after a very brief stint in the NSW Cup where he played a sparking cameo in the halves. He replaces Makahesi Makatoa on the bench and will once again handle the utility responsibilities. Otherwise all the changes and improvements will have to come from within the team that was very nearly upset by St George.
Naturally, Brisbane welcome back a cadre of core players just in time for this week’s clash. Adam Reynolds makes his return from a groin injury while valuable interchange forward Kobe Hetherington overcomes a corked back.
Realistically the Eels will need to win next week against the Roosters and find a way to at least split a game between the Broncos and Panthers over the next 3 weeks. If they can regain their mojo, if they can rise to the occasion, if they can remember how good we know they can be and get the win on Friday it would relieve a world of pressure on themselves. Brisbane will be primed for this one though. They are locked shoulder-to-shoulder with the Panthers in the race for the minor premiership and are looking to maintain a crest of momentum heading into the finals.
It makes Friday’s result very likely a season defining moment. Find a way to win and you get the chance to ignite your own surge to the postseason. You get Reagan Campbell-Gillard and Maika Sivo back and suddenly start to look at just how high inside the Top 8 you can climb. A loss though. Well you deal with that later but it leaves you in a grim, grim situation.
|Parramatta Eels||Brisbane Broncos|
|Clinton Gutherson||1||Reece Walsh|
|Bailey Simonsson||2||Deine Mariner|
|Will Penisini||3||Kotoni Staggs|
|Daejarn Asi||4||Herbie Farnworth|
|Sean Russell||5||Selwyn Cobbo|
|Dylan Brown||6||Ezra Mam|
|Mitchell Moses||7||Adam Reynolds|
|Joe Ofagenhaue||8||Thomas Flegler|
|Joey Lussick||9||Billy Walters|
|Junior Paulo||10||Payne Haas|
|Andrew Davey||11||Kurt Capewell|
|Bryce Cartwright||12||Jordan Riki|
|J’maine Hopgood||13||Patrick Carrigan|
|Luca Moretti||14||Tyson Smoothy|
|Ryan Matterson||15||Brendan Piukura|
|Wiremu Greig||16||Kobe Hetherington|
|Brendan Hands||17||Keenan Palasia|
|Makahesi Makatoa||18||Corey Jensen|
|Waqa Blake||19||Xavier Willison|
|Ofahiki Ogden||20||Tristan Sailor|
|Ky Rodwell||21||Jock Madden|
|Jack Murchie||22||Jordan Pereira|
NRLW Team List
Round 4, 3:10PM Saturday 12th August, Totally Workwear Stadium
First up, I respect the fierce optimism in naming Kennedy Cherrington to play this week. Unfortunately I think her season may very well be finished given that I expect the judiciary to come crashing down on a dangerous throw charge levelled against her in Round 3. As I mentioned in our instant reaction podcast, I certainly hope there is scalability in the charges and suspensions in the NRLW since the NRL is templated for a 27 round competition and any time off is balanced for that.
Obviously the Eels will need to replace her should she be given any amount of time off. I imagine Ruby-Jean Kennard-Ellis would be recalled with one of her or Madeline Jones pushing into the starting side and Talesha O’Neill taking over at lock forward.
The good news is that Rachael Pearson and Elsie Albert are finally named in the starting side. The Eels will need every ounce of experience and skill they have this week as they cross the Northern borders to take over the Broncos. Brisbane were ruthless in their dominant 40-12 win over the Cowboys last week with fearsome recruit Mele Hufanga running riot with a 4-try day.
In spite of the scoreboard, I did see legitimate signs of improvement in Parramatta’s effort against the Knights in Round 3. Still, they will need plenty more of it if they are to challenge Brisbane on the weekend.
|Parramatta Eels||Brisbane Broncos|
|Abbi Church||1||Hayley Maddick|
|Zali Fay||2||Lauren Dam|
|Kimberley Hunt||3||Mele Hufanga|
|Cassey Tohi-Hiku||4||Shenae Ciesiolka|
|Monique Donovan||5||Ashleigh Werner|
|Pihuka Berryman-Duff||6||Gayle Broughton|
|Rachael Pearson||7||Ali Brigginshaw|
|Talesha O’Neill||8||Breanna Eales|
|Rueben Cherrington||9||Lavinia Gould|
|Elsie Albert||10||Brianna Clark|
|Amelia Mafi||11||Tazmin Gray|
|Mahalia Murphy||12||Romy Teitzel|
|Kennedy Cherrington||13||Mariah Denman|
|Capri Paekau||14||Jada Ferguson|
|Madeline Jones||15||Filomina Hanisi|
|Shannon Muru||16||Chelsea Lenarduzzi|
|Kyra Simon||17||Jasmine Fogavini|
|Tyla Amiatu||18||Toni Hunt|
|Taneka Todhunter||19||Grace Griffin|
|Ruby-Jean Kennard-Ellis||20||Keisha-Leigh Coolwell|
NRLW Team List
Jersey Flegg Team List