Parramatta steal win in disappointing game

Parramatta have stolen this game, on the bell, with a try to Shane Shackleton to win 22-18 in front of 10,052 fans at Parramatta Stadium.

It was two sides desperate to win, it showed early in the contest, with both sides dropping ball in good positions. Gold Coast finally held the ball, getting Esi Tonga outside his man, offloading to Steve Michaels on the inside to open the scoring in the game. Prince converted from the sideline to make it 6-0.

In the 19th minute, Parramatta finally made good of their chances, Jacob Loko scoring in the corner but Luke Burt was unable to convert, leaving them trailing by two. Gold Coast would put themselves back in front by eight, when Greg Bird isolated Daniel Mortimer to make it 12-4.

There would be one more twist to this dour game before halftime though, Parramatta launched a kick high right on the hooter, it bounced off the crossbar and right into the hands of Robson to cross. Burt made no mistakes with this kick, keeping it close, though low in quality.

When Zillman burst through the line and touched down under the posts, again stretching the lead to eight, 18-10. It seemed the Titans would run away with the game and add to the Eels woes. A surprise penalty to Mortimer allowed the Eels field position to try and keep it a good contest.

Yes they could, a quick spread to the centres, got the ball to Joel Reddy who touched down right on the line. The noise intensified when Burt converted to make it a two point game and allowed the Eels a chance to steal it on the fulltime siren.

Thanks to the surprise kick from Fui Fui Moi Moi, giving Parramatta a repeat set. They were repelled for the whole set, until the last tackle when Parramatta launched it high, had it batted back into Shackleton's hands to win the game. Luke Burt put the icing on the cake, making it 22-18.

Match Details
Parramatta Eels 22 defeated Gold Coast Titans 18
National Rugby League - Round 7 - Sunday April 24, 2011 3:00pm
Venue: Parramatta Stadium
Referee: Ashley Klein and Gerard Sutton
Video Referee: Russell Smith
Touch Judges: Steve Carrall and David Munro
Crowd: 10,052
Halftime: Parramatta Eels 10 Gold Coast Titans 12 players of the match:
3 Points - William Zillman (1 Try)
2 Points - Fuifui Moimoi
1 Point - Jeff Robson (1 Try)

Parramatta Eels (22)
Tries: Joel Reddy, Shane Shackleton, Jeff Robson, Jacob Loko
Conversions: Luke Burt (3/4)

Gold Coast Titans (18)
Tries: Steve Michaels, Greg Bird, William Zillman
Conversions: Scott Prince (3/3) Live Commentary Welcome to a gloomy Parramatta Stadium, for a contest between two sides who are desperate for wins, Parramatta and Gold Coast. Earlier in the Toyota Cup, Parramatta survived a Titans fightback and slotted a field goal two minutes from time, to win 18-16.
Changes are minimal for both sides in tonight's contest; Carl Webb drops off Parramatta's bench for Ben Smith and for Gold Coast, a comestic change, Michael Henderson starts and Matthew White goes to the bench.
Gold Coast are first on the field, lead by captain Scott Prince, they are followed by the home side to a cheer from their fans, Parramatta with Nathan Hindmarsh leading them out. We will have a moments silence before the game starts.
1 min: The minutes silence is observed perfectly and here we go, Scott Prince opens the game.
3 min: Unlucky there by Parramatta, running sideways and seemed to spill out backwards but the referee calls it knocked on. First attacking opportunity for Gold Coast.
6 min: Gold Coast are testing out Luke Burt early at fullback but he's been cool hand Luke thus far.
7 min: Mortimer sprints out of dummy-half, he finds Fui Fui but it's judged to be forward to the dismay of the Parramatta faithful.
9 min: TRY
Parramatta have been made to pay for their mistakes, Esi Tonga got outside his man with early ball, finding Steve Michaels on the inside and he strolls over for the opening points of the contest. Prince swings it over from the sideline to make it a perfect six.
Gold Coast Titans 6-0
10 min: An easy out for Gold Coast here, Tim Mannah is pinged for a hand in the ruck.
12 min: A break here for Parramatta, with a certain strip called lost but Parramatta can't make them pay, with Capewell scooping up the ball.
12 min: Titans undoing their positive start, with a few drop balls now in succession.
Parramatta might have a try, checking if Fui Fui Moi Moi got the ball down and hasn't lost it.
13 min: NO TRY! Fui Fui hasn't grounded the ball at all, he put it on a foot of a Titans player. Huge sigh of relief for the Titans there.
14 min: Horrible there, Friend throws a forward pass from dummy-half, that should never happen.
15 min: Back to back penalties for Parramatta here, surely they have to cross the line?
17 min: Gold Coast have lost their way since the try, penalties, drop ball, Esi Tonga spilt it back, luckily Luke Capewell is there to save the day.
19 min: TRY
The lokomotive has started it's engine, Parramatta finally make the Titans pay for their mistake. Jacob Loko runs a good line and brushes off some flimsy defence to score. Burt is unsuccessful with his kick.
Gold Coast Titans 6-4
20 min: Greg Bird just allows Parramatta a piggyback out of their own line, giving away a penalty.
22 min: Huzzah, Gold Coast have completed a set but got no pressure on Uaisele on last.
23 min: I jinxed them there, they conceded a penalty straight away Gold Coast but Parramatta match them in the error stakes, dropping it on second in good field position.
25 min: Commentators have denounced this game already as tragic, I have to agree, both sides have a case of the dropsies. Parramatta have dropped it early in their count, after a reprieve from the goal line dropout.
29 min: TRY
A good ball from Prince put Bird one on one with Mortimer and he just brushes past him to score the Titan's second try. Prince has no troubles with this kick either, converting it.
Gold Coast Titans 12-4
31 min: Hindmarsh refuses to move from the play the ball area and that will be a penalty every day of the week.
33 min: Welcome back to the dropathon, Ben Ridge has joined the show now, dropping a simple one.
37 min: David Mead is pushed over the sideline, Parramatta with the scrum and the whistle must be getting annoying for the Titans players. Ryan James flops on top of the man but he will breath a sigh of relief, surprise surprise, it's dropped again!
Checking if Robson has scored for Parramatta.
40 min: TRY
A fortutious try here for Parramatta, the kick comes off the upright and no-one is there but Jeff Robson who collects the four pointer. Burt from in front, makes no mistake and we have two point ballgame at halftime.
Gold Coast Titans 12-10
41 min: Surely the second half can only get better? please. Players are back on the field and Luke Burt gets us underway.
43 min: Gold Coast have started the second half, much like the first. Forced two errors early from the Eels but lack the killer punch.
44 min: They pile on the pressure after a horrible drop from Burt from the play the ball but Gold Coast keep the pressure on forcing a drop-out.
46 min: Parramatta have their chance for some pressure now, after a penalty right on halfway.
50 min: Both sides have managed to finish sets, hooray!
51 min: Sorry I jinxed them there, Mortimer drops it cold.
52 min: TRY
Zillman has looked the most likely today, he just got into the clear, dodging several shirt-grabbing attempts at tackles to score under the posts. It's in front, so Prince has no problems advancing their lead to eight.
Gold Coast Titans 18-10
53 min: It's been three years since Parramatta has won without Hayne and they are looking lost without him. Parramatta don't even complete their first tackle, after forcing an error. Gold Coast have a chance to put this game beyond all doubt.
55 min: It's not Esi Tonga's day, he goes for a run down the sideline, tried to get outside Reddy but he loves that, bundling him into touch.
58 min: Mortimer tries to chip for his winger but Atkins can only bat it dead, a long way from the day he scored four tries on debut.
60 min: Prince is through and passes but it's judged forward. Will we see Billy Rogers today?
62 min: Parramatta get a penalty but the best part of this game, is watching Billy Rogers, says it all really. As I type, Hindmarsh drops the ball.
65 min: Billy Rogers update: Still not on, game is still terrible but the Titans are pinged for not playing the ball properly.
67 min: Another penalty to Parramatta, count is 9-3, so Parramatta have had the leg up here.
Going to the video referee, maybe he just wanted to double check, that Parramatta actually scored.
68 min: TRY
Possession and penalties have got Parramatta over here, they shifted wide to Reddy who touches down right on the line. Burt has swung it over to make it a two point game, with an exciting finish.
Gold Coast Titans 18-16
70 min: You've heard of the corridor of uncertainy in cricket? well this game has been played in the corridor of boring and predictability, with Scott Prince kicking it down the wingers throat.
72 min: It's last, Luke Burt who has looked the only Eel likely to do anything, he chips it and regathers, throws a speculator to Uaisele who scores. Oh wait he doesn't, it's been called a penalty to Gold Coast, that was the most enterprising piece of play in this whole game.
74 min: Rogers update: He still hasn't taken the field, maybe Kearney doesn't know who he is?
75 min: Off the drop out, Titans are looking likely to put this away. Prince gives the short ball to Minichiello who is stopped an inch short and tries to be the hero but he's lost the ball.
77 min: Get the hook out! Minichiello has maybe given Parramatta the opportunity, he threw the miracle pass and it's dropped.
78 min: Poor set by Parramatta and just to show you how bad this game has been, Fui Fui has put in a kick which forced a line drop out.
Shane Shackleton might have the winner here.
80 min: TRY
Parramatta have won a low standard contest. They put it high with only a few seconds left, it's batted back into the hands of Shane Shackleton who scores. Burt with the conversion, which is pointless now, converts it, just because. The last Billy Rogers update is, he didn't get onto the field at all.
Parramatta Eels 22-18

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