The Dyldam Parramatta Eels will be celebrating a milestone for two of their most experienced members of the Blue and Gold squad this weekend when they take on the Newcastle Knights, with Captain Tim Mannah and Chris Sandow running out for their 150th NRL First Grade game.
Dyldam Parramatta Eels prop and Captain Tim Mannah has been an instrumental member of the team since making his NRL debut in 2009.
Growing up in Sydney’s west and having played his junior rugby league with the Guildford Owls, Mannah has spent his entire football career in the Parramatta District.
In his first year at the club, Mannah was a part of the 2009 Grand Final team who faced the Melbourne Storm and the prop brings a wealth of experience and leadership to a relatively young Blue and Gold squad.
Mannah’s representative football is impressive, representing City in the City vs Country clash in 2010 and 2011 before being selected in the NSW Blues side.
Mannah was given the nod as Eels co-captain in 2013, co-captained again in 2014 alongside Jarryd Hayne, and was announced again to lead the Blue and Gold in 2015.
“Tim leads by example on and off the field, and he is a great ambassador for our club,” coach Brad Arthur said at the time of his captaincy announcement.
Hailing from Kingaroy, Chris Sandow grew up just north of Brisbane where he played rugby league in the Aboriginal community of Cherbourg.
Sandow’s first grade career began in 2008 when he debuted for the South Sydney Rabbitohs. His debut year was one to remember, kicking some of the most memorable field goals of the season, and ultimately rewarded with the Dally M award for Rookie of the Year.
Sandow went on to play 84 games for the Rabbitohs.
A proud member of the Indigenous community, Sandow was chosen as part of the 2012 Indigenous All Star’s Team.
2012 was also the year that Sandow moved to the Blue and Gold and has become a vital member of the Eels.
The halfback excelled in 2014 where he was awarded for his efforts at the club’s presentation night, claiming the Ken Thornett Medal for Players' Player, as voted on week-by-week by his teammates.
In 2015, Sandow returned from an Eels pre-season in the best shape of his career and Arthur commended his playmaker on his new commitment and drive at training both on and off the field.