The Parramatta Eels Jersey Flegg side and Wentworthville Magpies Intrust Super Premiership NSW Cup sides held their first pre-season trials at Ringrose Park last night ahead of their respective 2019 seasons.
With both sides taking on the South Sydney Rabbitohs, the young Blue & Gold were the first side in action for the afternoon.
Still impacted by injuries from the 2018 season, and several players unavailable due to selection in the SG Ball competition and Intrust Super Premiership trial to feature later in the afternoon, Jersey Flegg Head Coach Dean Feeney named a young and relatively inexperienced 22 man squad for the clash.
The Rabbitohs posted first points with a try against the run of play, despite the Eels dominating early field position. Unable to turn early possession into points, the away side rallied with tries on either side of half time to build an early lead against the young, enthusiastic Blue & Gold line up.
A try to interchange player Joey Small saw the Eels strike back in the second stanza before a lack of completion and fatigue from both sides begun to creep into the game.
A late try to the Rabbitohs flattered the away side and extended the scoreline, coming away with a 16-4 victory.
Jersey Flegg – South Sydney Rabbitohs 16 def. Parramatta Eels 4 (No conversion attempts)
In the Intrust Super Premiership trial, the opening half saw Eels players play the opening forty minutes of the clash.
The side saw NRL experienced players Bevan French, Josh Hoffman, Peni Terepo and Kane Evans named alongside the young Ethan Parry, Haze Dunster, Jaeman Salmon and Kyle Schneider, giving the Eels plenty of youth and experience on the field.
The clash also provided opportunities for forwards Andrew Davey, Salesi Fainga’a, Ray Stone, Stefano Utoikamanu and Oregon Kaufusi to push their claims forward before the start of the 2019 season.
The Rabbitohs struck early in the encounter to give the away side an early lead, but after a strong charge from Peni Terepo, putting the home side on the front foot, young hooker Kyle Schneider capitalized with a 40/20. The following set saw the Eels cross over out wide with Greg Leleisiuao putting points on the board following a pass from Bevan French.
However from Rabbitohs made the most of their opportunities and impressed in their hit out. They clicked into gear, striking through their forwards close to the line before crossing for two tries out wide down their left edge to claim a comfortable 20-4 lead after the opening forty minutes.
The second half saw the Wentworthville Magpies take the field crossing for a try in their forty minutes of play, whilst the Rabbitohs were unable to trouble the scoreboard.
Intrust Super Premiership – South Sydney Rabbitohs 20 defeated Parramatta Eels/Wentworthville Magpies 10