Written by Josh Chahal, May 30, 2016
THE Eels have won an absolute thriller as they staged a second half comeback to beat the Knights 20-18 at Hunter Stadium. Here are five things RLW learned:
1. Everything he touches turns to gold
There was little doubt that Semi Radradra is the best winger on the planet, but just in case there was the man continues to eliminate any lingering thoughts. Line breaks going forward, safe as houses under the high ball and another four-pointer to his name – the Fijian-flyer continues to impress.
2. Both sides played like their season was on the line
Although it’s a mathematical possibility neither side is going to be playing finals footy, but you wouldn’t know it after watching this one. The effort was remarkable from both sides and it’s a shame there had to be a loser. The intensity was top-notch and you just hope they can continue in this manner for the sake oftheir fans.
3. Can the season get any worse for Parramatta?
It was their first win since the announcement that the side was set to be stripped of 12 competition points for breaching the salary cap, but it has come at a price. Kieran Foran was forced from the field in the first half with a shoulder injury that looks like it could see him spending some time on the sidelines. It’s the last thing Eels’ fans need given the turbulent ride they’ve endured over the past month.
4. Fans were rewarded for braving the cold
It wasn’t the result the home fans were after but they were certainly treated to a high quality spectacle by their players. Credit to Nathan Brown for exploring new ideas with this Knights outfit and we applaud the execution by this young side who certainly did their home crowd proud.
5. In a fast-paced, entertaining game defence once again proves the difference
It’s an age-old saying in sport that defence wins you matches, and it once again rang true in this one. The Eels barely had a touch of the ball in the first 15 minutes of the second half but managed to hold the Knights to just two penalty goals despite a relentless onslaught from the hosts. When Bevan French crossed over for a try on debut momentum begun to swing the way of the visitors who were rewarded for their defensive discipline.
Eels 20 (Scott, Radradra, French,Gordon tries; Gordon 2 goals) beat Knights 18 (Mata’utia, Pauli, Ross tries; Hodkinson 3 goals).