Eels down Broncos 21-14 - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Eels down Broncos 21-14

By Todd Balym 29/06/2009 06:19:00 AM Comments (0)

Parramatta veteran Nathan Hindmarsh says Jarryd Hayne is probably one of the most naturally gifted rugby league players he has ever seen.

The Hayne "enigma" continued on Sunday as the fullback's flashes of brilliance helped spark the Eels to a remarkable 21-14 NRL victory over Brisbane at Parramatta Stadium.

Twice he almost sealed victory for the Eels with long-range tries, only to be pulled down short of the line by desperate Broncos.

It wasn't until Luke Burt stepped up to boot a 35m field goal to break a 14-14 deadlock in the 78th minute that Parramatta secured the win, but the game-breaking plays of Hayne had sparked the Eels into action.

He carried the ball a game-high 235m, had two linebreaks and five tackle breaks - continuing his sensational performance from his outing with NSW last Wednesday.

It was enough for Hindmarsh to call on NSW selectors to hand Hayne the No.1 jersey for State of Origin III and put skipper Kurt Gidley into the halves.

"Probably one of the best I've seen. It's just getting him to do it consistently," said Hindmarsh.

"This year he had a slow start but he's playing the best footy I've seen him since he's been in first grade.

"He knows he can do it. He's our go-to man now. If something's not happening it's two passes to Haynesy."

Coach Daniel Anderson says he's yet to figure out how to make Hayne tick, although he knows there is potential left in the 21-year-old dual international.

"He's a phenomenal rugby league player, an athlete," said Anderson.

"He can literally saunter around the field and turn the afterburners on and he leaves people in his wake.

"A healthy, fit Jarryd without having to play (Origin) on a Wednesday night is going to be even better for us.

"We've had many discussions about the enigma that is Haynesy. Sometimes players just (suddenly think) 'I'm pretty good at this game and if I commit to the team ethic and the team workplace and I train hard I can actually do more'.

"I think he's trained harder this year and feels he can do more in the game."

The Eels led 8-4 at half time with razzle dazzle tries to Eric Grothe and Joel Reddy, then extended their buffer to 10 points with a 90m intercept by Krisnan Inu.

But the Broncos rallied, Andrew McCullough barging over from dummy half before Steve Michaels scoring his second try of the day in the 63rd minute to level scores.

The Eels had three genuine tryscoring opportunities in the final 15 minutes, two for Hayne and another when prop Fuifui Moimoi ignored an unmarked Daniel Mortimer and failed to "Tongan sidestep" fullback Karmichael Hunt.

In the end Moimoi's mistake didn't matter as the Eels claimed their fifth win of the season, sealed by a final minute try to Mortimer.

They remain in 12th position but are now only three points outside the top eight.

"We set ambitions for the top eight ... but the reality is we have not won three in a row yet and we need to do that first," said Anderson.

"If that takes care of itself then we can look at the bigger picture."

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