Ladies Who League: Round 13
Our weekly Ladies Who League columnist, Mary Kaye, talks us through the rollercoaster of being an Eels fan over the last seven days. Remember you can find more of her work on ladieswholeague.com!
This week can best be described as a roller coaster, but that is all part and parcel of being an NRL fan.
Following last Wednesday night's State of Origin success, I was bursting with pride following the performance of the NSW Blues. It was a performance which showcased tremendous determination, perseverance and mental toughness. The Queensland team were relentless in attack for the last 20 minutes of the game, yet the Blues held on in what was an emphatic victory.
Crucial to that success was our Jarryd Hayne. He was best on field for Origin I and his attack sparked the Blues. That try he scored was pure magic - it showcased his attacking flair, strength and pure skill.
For those interested in stats, in Origin 1, Hayne ran 173 metres, had 10 tackle breaks and one line-break assist. He was instrumental in the Blues performance.
Following the high of State of Origin, to see our Eels go down to the Panthers 38-12 was a massive disappointment. It showed how important Hayne is to our team and just how crucial he is to ensuring that our attack is on point.
This doesn't make us a one man team, it just makes sense. Teams play their best football when their best team is on the field. Our best team is one which includes Jarryd.
The biggest disappointment this week however, came when the Eels announced that one of my favourites, Nathan Peats will be out for the rest of the season following an ACL injury to his knee.
Peatsy has been our buy of the season and just a few weeks ago was being talked up as a potential State of Origin hooker.
He has been impossible to ignore at the Eels this year. He has been very physical in attack, and has provided the raw aggression which Parramatta have lacked in recent seasons.
He has also helped in taking some of the attacking pressure off Jarryd Hayne. Through quick play the balls and his ability to keep the opposition guessing, he has really transformed the side and become a real fan favourite.
Peatsy will be missed for the rest of the season. However, his injury really gives other players the opportunity to step up and for our senior players to show that they are capable of leading the team. Many players at the Eels are just beginning to find their feet this year, most notably Corey Norman and Will Hopoate.
Also, there is no lack of quality players at the Eels this year. We have seen how explosive Jarryd Hayne can be and with men like Manu Ma'u, Will Hopoate and Semi Radradra leading the way, as an Eels fan I hope we can overcome this loss.
It is time for some of our experienced men to stand up, take control and prove that the Eels are still finals hopefuls despite losing Peatsy.
This week will be a massive game against the Cowboys and the boys will be looking to redeem themselves following the loss to the Panthers. I have no doubt that we have the ability to beat the Cowboys, especially when the boys hear the roar of the crowd as they enter Fortress Parramatta.
I would like to take this opportunity to wish Peatsy a speedy recovery. We look forward to seeing him back next year.
And congratulations to Tim Mannah, who got married over the weekend.