Eels sink Panthers 19-18 in golden point
A Chris Sandow field goal with just seconds left in extra time handed Parramatta a thrilling 19-18 golden point NRL win over local rivals Penrith at Centrebet Stadium on Saturday night.
Having missed with two earlier attempts at the match-winner both in regulation and golden point, Sandow piloted over the shot from 30 metres with 34 seconds remaining to finally separate the two sides at the bottom of the ladder.
Seemingly gone, trailing 18-6 with just 12 minutes remaining, veteran Nathan Hindmarsh inspired a stunning Eels revival as he wound back the clock with a bust down the short side to send fellow impending retiree Luke Burt over under the posts.
Hindmarsh then layed on the crucial ball for Fuifui Moimoi charging downfield, the big prop eventually finding Jarryd Hayne to lock it up with six minutes to go.
Sandow and Harry Siejka both pushed field goal attempts wide before extra time, Lachlan Coote’s blushes saved in the extra period when Ken Sio was millimetres too late to grounding a ball the Panthers fullback desperately wanted to roll dead.
Penrith dominated the opening period but a try to Eels centre Ryan Morgan just before the break meant they had nothing to show for it as they went to the sheds locked at 6-6.
Having had few cracks at the Panthers line, the Eels went from deep in their own territory as Joseph Paulo put Morgan away – three defenders left in his wake in a 55 metre run top the line.
The Panthers signalled their intentions to attack Parramatta’s right edge early in the contest, and it paid dividends with Luke Lewis scything over ten minutes in.
But despite numerous half breaks and a 6-1 penalty count in their favour they were unable to add to their tally, Coote kicking the ball out of Ken Sio’s hands as he attempted to score in the corner.
The momentum of Morgan’s try carried over into the second half as the Eels pushed for a lead, and it got worse for the Panthers as Luke Walsh left the field with a subluxed shoulder on 50 minutes.
Then Etu Uaisele turned the game when Jarryd Hayne fumbled after having a look at Penrith defence, Uaisele picking up the scraps and racing 85 metres to score.
It was a play which changed the game as David Simmons crossed three minutes later – the 18-6 scoreline more indicative of the home side’s domination before Parramatta’s late comeback.© AAP 2013
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