The Parramatta Eels are looking to go four wins in a row and hoping to edge closer to the NRL top four when they play the Sea Eagles at Lottoland on Sunday afternoon.
Here are five things you need to know about their Round 18 clash.
Match: Sea Eagles v Eels
Round 18 -
- Nine Network
- LIVE PASS
Head to head stats
The Eels have had the upper hand the last few seasons against Manly, winning 7 of the last 8 clashes against the Sea Eagles.
So far this year, the Eels have scored more points (363) than Manly (331), but also have more points scored against them.
Both team are pretty even with the pattern of their season and are hunting for some consistency with the Eels looking for their fourth consecutive victory and the Sea Eagles with four wins from their last five games.
In the corresponding clash last year, the Sea Eagles claimed a dominant 54-0 victory before the Eels bounced back with a 44-10 victory later in the season.
Blake Ferguson out, Ethan Parry in
Blake Ferguson will miss this game for the Eels with a knee infection, officially ruled out 24 hours before the clash. He makes way for exciting young talent Ethan Parry who will make his NRL debut on the wing.
Ferguson has had knee cleanout and Arthur sees is as a good opportunity to test Parry.
“Ferguson has had a bit of time off but he has picked up an infection in his knee, so we will give him a rest for this game and see where he gets to.” Arthur said.
“It gives us an opportunity to bring in Ethan Parry and see how he goes.”
“It is just a clean out. We are in a position where we can afford to give him a bit of a rest. His knee is pretty swollen from the infection but the medical guys are on top of it, cleaned it out and he will be right to go next week.”
Lottoland has always been a fortress for the Sea Eagles.
The Eels have been challenged away from home this season and will be keen to prove a point and make a mark on the competition.
The Eels have won just 20 times from 64 appearances at the venue. The Sea Eagles hold a 5-3 record at home this season
Moses v Cherry-Evans
Daly Cherry-Evans made his debut as the Maroons captain this year, and despite not winning the series, has had a great season.
He comes up against Mitchell Moses who has held the fort for Parramatta with changing halves partners this year.
Moses and Cherry-Evans are both the dominant halves in their side, with Dylan Brown (5 NRL games) and Cade Cust (7 NRL games) the younger less experienced halves in the pair, and the match up between the two number sevens will be a key match up in the clash.
Moses tops the table with 17 try assists, has nine line break assists and has the most kicks to sit second on the kick metre ladder whilst Cherry-Evans has 10 try assists, eight line break assists, three tries and 21 goals from his 11 games this season.
Battle on the ladder
The last clash of the weekend looks to be the game of the round with the result having a huge impact on the ladder.
The Sea Eagles sit in fifth whilst the Eels sit in sixth with just seven games remaining in the regular season after this weekend, both sides on 20 points, and both teams enter the clash with a 3-1 record over the past month of football.
This clash is just the first time these two sides meet this season, with the Eels to host the Sea Eagles in Round 25 at Bankwest Stadium, the final round of the regular season.