Eels NYC outmuscled by Warriors in Auckland
The Dyldam Parramatta Eels Holden Cup side has been defeated by a rampant New Zealand Warriors side 38-10 on a tough away trip to Auckland.
The Warriors were strong in attack early, running the length of the field before being held up for a try in the opening two minutes.
The Eels responded positively, gaining a penalty in the fifth minute that saw Bevan French stick the ball over the tryline after burrowing through three Warriors defenders.
With sustained pressure, second-rower Matiu Love-Henry scored for the Warriors after a powerful side-step saw five-eighth Ata Hingano make a line break and pass off.
The home side nudged in front with Hingano successfully kicking the conversion.
After some free passing, Warriors winger Tomas Aoake went over in the corner, but the Eels captain Alex Twal challenged the ruling.
A lengthy deliberation saw the decision overturned, with some last-ditch defence from Zach Dockar-Clay forcing his knee over the sideline before Aoake had grounded the ball.
The Warriors held out the junior Eels side from scoring on repeat occasions, repelling the Eels strong pressure a few times from their tryline.
Prop Toafofoa Sipley scored the Warriors - after finding a gap in the Eels defence and crashing over, taking the score to 10-4 at halftime.
The Warriors again began the second half strongly, with Sipley scoring his second just three minutes into the term, with Hingano accurate with the boot from right in front.
The Eels wrestled back some of the momentum, but were unable to convert it into points with the New Zealand defence holding strong as the Eels were held up over the line twice in a frantic few minutes.
A lightning pass from Ata Hingano set up Roache for a try on the Warriors’ left edge, before it was countered with Reimis Smith from the Eels powering over the defence from dummy half to score in the corner.
The Warriors then gained control, scoring one of the tries of the season from a combined team effort.
A fifth tackle kick looked certain to go dead, but somehow Aoake raced there in time to bat the ball backwards and incredibly it stayed in play, with Love-Henry getting a hand to it and grounding.
Two additional late tries to Roache and Aoake blew out the Warriors lead to 28 points, 38-10.
NZ Warriors 38 (Love-Henry 2, Roache 2, Sipley 2, Aoake tries, Hingano 5 goals)
Parramatta Eels 10 (French, Smith tries, Davis 1 goal)