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Eels edged out by Sharks

The Eels suffered a 30-26 loss to Cronulla at CommBank Stadium on Friday.

The seesawing affair finished five tries apiece, but goal-kicking proved the difference on a disappointing evening for the Eels.

Mitchell Moses marked his 200th NRL appearance with two tries, while Junior Paulo reached 150 matches in the Blue & Gold.

The Eels started strongly, flying out of the blocks with some stunning football to lead 10-0 inside 10 minutes.

The first try came during Parramatta’s first attacking set, as J’maine Hopgood drew in the defence before offloading for Reagan Campbell-Gillard to storm over the line.

Hopgood and RCG combine beautifully

Then, a spectacular phase of play saw the Eels score a second from inside their own half.

Another Hopgood offload set up a shift to the left, which saw Dylan Brown break into space before Maika Sivo tiptoed the touchline and finished off a magnificent Eels try.

Sivo scores a stunning Eels try!

The Sharks eventually won back momentum, however, and snatched the lead with two quickfire, close-range tries by Briton Nikora and Will Kennedy.

The pendulum continued to swing through the first half, with each side scoring tries before the break.

Mitchell Moses set CommBank Stadium alight when he sliced through the Sharks’ goal-line defence and marked his 200th NRL game with a try, putting Parramatta back in front.

Moses marks his milestone with a try

But Cronulla had the final say of the first half, as Matt Moylan sent Kennedy over for a try which handed the Sharks an 18-14 advantage.

The Eels returned to the second forty with clear intent, and quickly regained the lead.

With an early attacking set, Dylan Brown lofted a great pass to the left wing where Maika Sivo steamrolled his opposite number to score his second of the day.

No one is stopping Sivo

Moses then landed the conversion from the sideline, pushing Parramatta ahead by two points.

Sivo came close to completing a hat-trick on two occasions, but the Sharks’ defence held firm and spurred them on to skip ahead.

A turning point came when the Sharks took an intercept in the red zone and surged upfield. Moses made a great try-saving tackle but could not stop Will Kennedy from scoring his third try on the next play.

Cronulla then consolidated their lead on the hour-mark when Ronaldo Mulitalo leaped to pluck out a chip kick and score out wide.

With the clock winding down, J’maine Hopgood took matters into his own hands. The lock burst through the Sharks defence and found Moses in support, and the halfback’s second try closed the gap to four points with seven minutes to play.

Parramatta threw everything at Cronulla’s defence in the closing minutes, but the Eels fell just short of snatching a dramatic victory at home.

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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