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Match Preview: Eels v Knights, Round 21

Sterlo's Parra Preview | Eels v Knights, Round 21

The Parramatta Eels take on the Newcastle Knights at Bankwest Stadium on Saturday 10 August in Round 21 of the NRL Telstra Premiership.

Both coaches have stuck with the same seventeen players this week, with Blue & Gold Head Coach Brad Arthur naming the same seventeen that came away with a 12-4 victory over the Dragons last week.

Greg Leleisiuao, Peni Terepo, Jaeman Salmon and Stefano Utoikamanu form the reserves.

Opposition Head Coach Nathan Brown kept with the same seventeen that suffered a defeat to the Sea Eagles last week, with Kurt Mann remaining on the wing, Connor Watson at hooker and Mason Lino in the halves.

Danny Levi returns to the squad via the extended bench alongside Jamie Buhrer, Beau Fermor and Jirah Momoisea.

Returning home, the Eels have won six of their past seven games at the stadium, but the Knights have won 11 of their past 13 games against the Eels, and 30 games from the 52 clashes between the two.

When they met earlier this season, the Knights came away with a 28-14 victory at McDonald Jones Stadium in Round 7.

The Eels, who currently sit sixth on the ladder, are on a two game winning streak whilst the Knights, who sit in 11th, have lost their last five games.

The battle between Mitch Moses and Mitchell Pearce will go a long way in determining this clash, with both halfbacks the team’s dominant play maker. Pearce was a stand out for the Knights when they went on a six game winning streaking in the middle of the year, with fullback Kalyn Ponga also finding form.

Newcastle prop David Klemmer leads a Knights pack that has plenty of size and aggression and it will be matched by Kane Evans and Junior Paulo who set a strong platform for the Eels last week. 

Whilst the Eels didn’t fire in attack last week, they showed plenty of resolve and determination with their defence against a desperate Dragons side. They will be looking to make amends for their loss against the Knights earlier this season and will be buoyed in front of a vocal Blue & Gold Army back at Bankwest Stadium.

Knights halfback Pearce doesn't hold a candle to Eels counterpart Moses's 20 try assists (1st in NRL) but that doesn't mean he can't put players in space. Pearce sits second for line break assists with 14, while Moses doesn't crack the top 10.

Kick off is at 5:30pm.

Acknowledgement of Country

Parramatta Eels respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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