Game Day Preview | Eels v Raider
The Parramatta Eels take on the Canberra Raiders this afternoon at GIO Stadium for Round Five of the NRL Telstra Premiership.
Previewing the clash thanks to betting.club, Blue & Gold Assistant Coach Steve Murphy says it is the battle of the back five that will go a long way in determining the winner of the clash.
"Their forwards are very big and get over the advantage line very easily but a lot of stuff is created from their back five; Jordan Rapana and Joey Leilua really get them started in their sets, so we will have to do a good job there and hopefully we can minimise their go forward from that point on," Murphy said.
"Rapana and Leilua are both class players, but they have that across both sides of the field, and I am sure our boys will be up for the challenge," he added.
"We will need to be because I don’t think anyone will want to be embarrassed by their opponents so whoever does a good job in the back line will go a long way towards winning the game."
The Eels started the season with two wins, before suffering defeats to the Gold Coast Titans and Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks, and Muphy says the side will need to imrpove their handling and completions in tonight's clash.
"We were very happy with how we started and had a very impressive victory against St. George, who have turned out to be one of the better teams of the competition so we were very happy that night," Murphy said.
"But from that point on, we have failed to control the ball and haven’t given ourselves a chance."
"We will have to do that against a very big team this week otherwise we will be on the wrong end of the scoreboard."
The Raiders hold a strong record over the Eels at GIO Stadium, however Murphy knows there is a great opportunity to turn that around this week.
"Our away record hasn’t been great and it is something we will have to change, and change quickly," Murphy said.
"There is no better opportunity that this week. We have spoken about starting well, getting ourselves into the game and if we can go set for set with any team we are more than confident."
The NRL game is the third clash of the triple-header, with the Eels NYC (1:15pm) and the Wentworthville Magpies (3:15pm) also in action. NRL kick off is at 5:30pm.