Eels stage comeback to topple wasteful Raiders in Top End

This is indeed Eels Territory.

The Raiders didnt travel to the Top End as the crow flies. What should have been a routine flight to Darwin on Thursday became a 17-hour ordeal after they were re-routed via Melbourne. But after squandering a 16-point lead, the trip home will feel even longer.

This is a game that Canberra had well in their grasp. Up against an opponent they had beaten five times straight – and that doesnt include their win against the Eels in the pre-season – they again squandered a huge lead. They got away with it against Cronulla, but not on this occasion.

Rampaging: Blake Ferguson scores for the Eels in Darwin.

Rampaging: Blake Ferguson scores for the Eels in Darwin.Credit:AAP

It was one a game that needed a big play to break it open. Mitchell Moses provided it. With his team ahead by just two points late in proceedings, he ran the football and beat three would-be tacklers to find the try line. It sealed the game and propelled Parramatta into eighth spot at the expense of their next opponents, Wests Tigers. Given they have the bye next week, it is as good as four competition points.


Parramatta are an altogether different proposition at home. They have lost just once when hosting at Bankwest, a record mirrored at TIO Stadium. It appeared to make sense to drag the Raiders, a team laden with Englishmen, into the tropics. Despite being out of their element, the Green Machine better handled the hot and greasy conditions early on that saw the game kick off in 26 degrees and humidity reach 66 per cent.

The visitors had all the early running. From the moment Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad sliced through threadbare defence after just four minutes, it appeared an indication of what was to come. Jack Wigton and Sebastian Kris also crossed in the opening half to open what appeared to be an insurmountable lead.

Canberra had only had 48 per cent of possession but rarely turned the ball over. Their kicking game, both short and long, was superb.

Floodgates open: Manu Mau scores Parramatta's first try against the Raiders in two years:

Floodgates open: Manu Mau scores Parramatta's first try against the Raiders in two years:Credit:AAP

But the game changed in the space of three minutes just before half-time. When Manu Mau crossed, it was the first time the Eels had scored a try against Canberra in two yeaRead More – Source