Despite a late revival from the Rabbitohs, the men in Red and Green have gone down to the Eels by 28-22 at Pirtek Stadium this evening in Round 10 of the NYC.
After trailing 22-6 at half-time, Souths would fight back in the second half to within six points, but the Eels would hold on to take the win.
It took just four minutes for the Eels to draw first blood, but not without some help courtesy of a number of penalties and handling errors from the men in Red and Green. With the Rabbitohs caught short out wide, Eels winger James Gammidge took full advantage by racing in to make it 4-0.
Despite an opportunity following a penalty of their own, Souths were unable to capitalise on their good field position, coughing up the ball just metres before the line. But the Eels would have no such issues.
Just 12 minutes into proceedings, the Eels were in again following a short-ball to backrower Jack Morris, who barged his way over. Halfback Michael Doolan converted to make it 10-0 in favour of the home-side.
Parra’s other back-rower, Tyrrell Fuimaono, would pick up a try of his own moments later to make it 16-0 with Doolan’s conversion.
With 10 minutes in the opening stanza remaining, a well-weighted kick inside the 10 metre line sparked a contest between Parramatta’s fullback and Liam Coleman, with the Rabbitoh winning the race to open the Club’s account. Neihana Walters converted from right in front to make it 16-6.
With the clock winding down in the first half, the Rabbitohs came close to scoring on two occasions, only to be denied both times by some desperate Parramatta defence.
The home-side’s desperation in defence and patience with the ball would yield one more try before the siren though, with Bevan French taking advantage of an odd bounce of the ball to plant down the pill 10 metres in from touch. Doolan converted to take the half-time score to 22-6.
On the resumption, Parramatta continued to dominate when Dean Matterson completed a set of sustained pressure to grab a four-pointer out wide – Doolan’s conversion making the score 28-6.
Souths would hit back through Tom Perrin, who would take a brilliant offload out wide before proceeding to score in the corner to narrow the gap to 28-10. And before long, SG Ball graduate, Cam Murray, would power his way over next to the posts for the men in Red and Green. Walters would add the extras to make it 28-16.
The Souths comeback continued just 11 minutes from full-time, when Kalani Ili stepped the Parramatta defence at close range to cross the line for a try – Walters converting to make a game of it at 28-22.
The men in Red and Green threw everything they could at the Eels as they looked to equalise the match. But despite momentum seemingly shifting in their favour, it would be the Eels who take the match by 28-22.
Eels 28 (James Gammidge, Jack Morris, Tyrrell Fuimaono, Bevan French, Dean Matterson, tries; Michael Doolan 4 goals)
Rabbitohs 22 (Liam Coleman, Tom Perrin, Cam Murray, Kalani Ilim, tries; Neihana Walters 3 goals)