Cowboys round-up Eels in Townsville

The North Queensland Cowboys have put together a solid performance to comprehensively defeat the Parramatta Eels 28-6 at Dairy Farmers Stadium tonight.

It was a disappointing loss for the Eels who were coming off a big win over the Roosters in the previous round.

Parramatta had the perfect start when they opened the scoring after just three minutes. But they didn?t see the Cowboys? in-goal again as the home side went from strength-to-strength, to lead 14-6 at half time.

The Cowboys went further ahead in the second half, locking out the Eels in the process.

The match went beyond doubt in the 65th minute when Cowboys five-eighth Nathan Fien ducked through to set up Rod Jensen who scored next to the uprights.

COWBOYS 28 Tries: Williams 2, Tronc, Jensen Goals: Hannay 6/7 defeated EELS 6 Tries: Petersen Goals: Witt 1/1

Dairy Farmers Stadium Referee: Sean Hampstead Video Referee: Chris Ward Touch Judges: Paul Holland, Matt Cecchin

By the clock: Fanstatic conditions here in Townsville tonight. Both sides getting ready to take the field. Kick off!

3 min: TRY - Eels. Matt Petersen scores after the Cowboys are caught short out wide. The Cowboys under pressure early following a line break from Parra which forced the Cowboys into a line drop out. Michael Witt conversion from wide is a beauty. Eels 6-0

6 min: NEWS - It's all Parramatta with Possession favouring the visitors by 100%.

8 min: TRY - Cowboys. Tremendous reply with Ty Williams scoring next to the sticks. Conversion Josh Hannay, brings up 600 career points for the Cowboys centre. 6-all

13 min: NEWS - Still 6-all. End-to-end play now as possession favours Eels 70%

16 min: NEWS - Professional foul from Nathan Hindmarsh (Eels) and when Cowboys looked likely to score, but no sin bin.

17 min: PENALTY GOAL - Cowboys. From the ensuing penalty, Hannay puts the home side in front. Cowboys 8-6

21 min: TRY - Cowboys. Shane Tronc powers through to score just to the left of the uprights. Conversion Hannay. Cowboys 14-6

25 min: NEWS - Cowboys dominating and now holding a 52% possession advantage after having very little ball early on. A couple of head highs sneaking into the Eels' method of defence. Matt Bowen comes on for the Cowboys after starting in the bench.

32 min: NEWS - Eels making a go of it with repeat sets but are unable to crack the Cowboys' defensive line. Possession now favours Eels 54%.

36 min: NEWS - Huge break from Matt Bowen for the Cowboys but the final pass to Neil Sweeney is deemed to be forward. Parramatta look to be tiring.

HALF TIME: After being down 6-nil after just 3 minutes, the Cowboys have struck back hard to lead 14-6 at half time. The Cowboys are doing more tackling but it is the Eels who are missing more tackles. Completions also favour the Eels who are managing 17 from 20 sets, while the Cowboys have a 15 from 22 completion rate. Penalties favour Cowboys 7-4. Possession favours Eels 53%.

Second half underway...

47 min: PENALTY GOAL - Cowboys. Hannay makes no mistake. A rough call on the Eels this time but the Cowboys dominating the ruck early in the second half. Cowboys 16-6

50 min: NEWS - Cowboys come within a whisker of scoring and are increasingly looking dangerous. Possession favours Eels 51%.

57 min: PENALTY GOAL - Cowboys. Follows Cowboys getting repeat sets and then milking the penalty. Hannay makes no mistake from in front. Cowboys 18-6

63 min: NEWS - Cowboys get another penalty and seems intent on holding the Eels out. Infringement in the play-the-ball from Luke Burt (Eels) sees the possession flow into the Cowboys' favour, 51%.

65 min: TRY - Cowboys. Rod Jensen scores after taking an inside pass from Nathan Fien who ducked his weaved his way through the defence to set up the try. Conversion in front from Hannay. Cowboys 24-6

72 min: TRY - Cowboys. Ty Williams gets a double following a kick from David Myles, surviving the scrutiny of the video ref. Tough conversion attempt from wide out is missed by Hannay. Cowboys 28-6

76 min: NO TRY - Cowboys denied. A kick from Sweeney with Williams and Steven Southern competing to see who can score, but they ultimately get each other's way and the ball is knocked-on.

FULL TIME: A polished performance from the Cowboys. The longer the game went on, the more dominating the Cowboys became, posting their 7th victory of the season. The Cowboys win coming on the back of some tremendous defence with Luke O'Donnell and Steve Southern topping the Cowboys tackle count. Every one of the forwards worthy of mention thus giving half back David Myles and five eighth Nathan Fien room to set up their outside men.

For the Eels, they were impressive last week against the Roosters but have crashed tonight. They copped the raw end of the stick from the penalty count but by-and-large, they lacked discipline. It would take a diehard supporter to think they are a chance for the top eight.

Stats: Completions: Cowboys 33/47 - Eels 26/41 Tackles: Eels 296-253 Mistackles: 17-all Errors: Eels 20-13 Penalties: Cowboys 11-7 Possession: Cowboys 52% Score: Cowboys 28-6

----------------------------------------- players of the match: 3 - N Fien (Cowboys) 2 - L O'Donnell (Cowboys) 1 - S Tronc (Cowboys) -----------------------------------------