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Five Things – Eels v Broncos, Elimination Final

The Parramatta Eels take on the Brisbane Broncos at Bankwest Stadium on Sunday afternoon for their elimination final.

It’s expected to be an electric game in front of a sold out crowd to wrap up the first week of NRL finals.

Here are five things you need to know about the clash.

Do or die game

The winner of this match progresses to the second week of finals, while the loser is out of the race altogether.

This is the only chance for the Eels and Broncos and whoever wants it more will come out victorious.

Whichever team wins will face either the loser of the Melbourne Storm and Canberra Raiders game, which is being played at AAMI Park.

Record sell-out final

Bankwest Stadium will be packed to the rafters on Sunday afternoon, with the game becoming the fastest Sydney final to sell out in almost ten years.

The elimination final sold out on Thursday, three days before kick out and it is set to be a blockbuster.

While there will be some diehard Broncos fans making the trip across the border, the stands will undoubtedly look like a sea of Blue and Gold.

Eels' home ground advantage

The Eels have well and truly made Bankwest Stadium their fortress since it opened on Easter Monday, winning eight of their ten games there.

It’s proven difficult for other teams to play at the ground and the Eels will be keen to make the Broncos feel very unwelcome Sunday afternoon.

The presence of the Blue and Gold Army will be felt heavily amongst the sell-out crowd.

First finals series for young Eels

A number of the young Eels will be playing their first NRL finals game when Sunday rolls around.

Boasting the youngest spine in the game, the Eels benefit from going into the clash with a ‘nothing to lose’ attitude.

Players making their NRL finals debut include captain Clint Gutherson (who missed out on finals in 2017 due to injury), hooker Reed Mahoney, half Dylan Brown, winger Maika Sivo and forward Ray Stone.

The rookies will be looking to the likes of veterans Michael Jennings and Blake Ferguson who have been in this position a number of times over.

Team changes

The Parramatta Eels will be without prop Kane Evans who is sidelined for a week, but they will be bolstered by the return of forward Nathan Brown from suspension.

Tepai Moeroa will come into the side for Kane Evans.

The Broncos welcome back Joe Ofahengaue from a calf injury, which pushes Patrick Carrigan to the bench and Rhys Kennedy to reserves.

Centre Gehamat Shibasaki has been added to the bench, pushing Izaia Perese out.

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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