Eels hold on to beat Eagles - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eels hold on to beat Eagles

20/05/2005 09:42:15 PM Comments (0)

Parramatta consolidated its spot in the NRL top eight with a hard-fought 18-12 win over Manly at Parramatta Stadium on Friday night.

In a contest dominated by tough defence and plenty of dropped balls, the Eels recorded their sixth victory of the season despite failing to score a point in the second half.

The home side did enough with three tries in the opening stanza to run out three-tries to two winners, as they repelled numerous Manly attacking raids towards the back end of the match to hold on for the six-point win.

The loss continues what has become a worrying trend for the Eagles, with all three of Manly's losses this season coming in night matches.

The home side had the best possible start when Timana Tahu went over in the third minute, after winger Luke Burt had tapped back a perfectly placed cross-field kick from halfback Tim Smith into the waiting arms of the former international winger. Burt added the extras to put the Eels up 6-0.

Parramatta enjoyed the better of the field position early thanks to a multitude of simple errors by the Manly side.

Hooker Chad Randall kicked out on the full from inside his own half, a feat five-eighth Michael Witt managed to equal with a line drop out only minutes later.

It wasn't until they were awarded an offside penalty in the 15th minute that the Sea Eagles finally had the ball in the Eels half.

Parramatta appeared to have a legitimate claim for a penalty, if not a penalty try, in the 19th minute, when Glenn Morrison was held back by Witt after he had toed the ball into the in-goal area. But video referee Steven Clark ruled that interchange forward Adam Peek had impeded Manly fullback Brett Stewart from taking a bomb in the lead-up.

A string of penalties kept the Eagles in the game, but it wasn't until a flying Smith dropped an Eric Grothe pass on the halfway line that Manly were able to score.

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