Time to look ahead to Sunday's decider! Rob Crosby has a full look at both teams and what to expect ...
22 hours ago
For the third time in the last six weeks the Parramatta Eels have dropped their bundle in golden point, sacrificing a 12-0 lead against a spirited Roosters side to almost certainly consign them to last place in the 2011 premiership. The Roosters got home 13-12 at Parramatta Stadium.
An uninspiring and slow first half saw just one late try after 35 minutes to Eels' winger Chris Hicks, celebrating his 200th match. Both sides were reasonably predictable in attack before halftime, but the second half presented a much different spectacle.
Parramatta showed further enthusiasm to take a 12-0 lead through a Jarryd Hayne special - with 15 minutes remaining and the home side on top, the entire momentum of the game swung in favour of the Roosters. For much of the first hour, the visitors were simply hoisting the ball high and offering little in the way of fifth-tackle pressure, with the Eels back three safe and confident under Anasta's pressure bombs.
For the Roosters it would be former Dragon Jason Ryles who would break through first, the gap closed to six with ten minutes remaining. The Roosters stayed full of running and it paid dividends on 75 minutes as Brad Takairangi put the ball over the line and with Anasta's conversion scores were level.
A frantic final five minutes ensued, with three Anasta field goal attempts being charged down or missing wide - including one bizarre chargedown by Jarryd Hayne who proceeded to soccer it most of the length of the field before Anasta wrapped up the pill and returned his side back up the park.
With golden point underway it was the Eels who came up with the error, a strangely out of form Fuifui Moimoi spilling the ball inside his own half. The Roosters swung the ball back and forward in front of the Eels posts before finally finding Braith Anasta deep - the Roosters five-eighth nailing his fourth attempt at field goal to notch up the side's 3rd consecutive win.
The loss leaves Parramatta floundering in last place and they will require the Titans and Raiders to lose this weekend before facing the Titans next week at Robina in what shapes as a potential wooden spoon showdown. The Roosters rise for now to 11th position behind Canterbury and South Sydney and will fancy their chances against a depleted and rattled Melbourne Storm next Sunday night as they prepare for Mad Monday.
Parramatta Eels 12 were defeated by Sydney Roosters 13
National Rugby League - Round 25 - Friday August 26, 2011 7:30pm
Venue: Parramatta Stadium
Referee: Jason Robinson and Grant Atkins
Video Referee: Phil Cooley
Touch Judges: Steve Chiddy and Adam Gee
Halftime: Parramatta Eels 6 Sydney Roosters 0
Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:
3 Points - Braith Anasta (2 Conversions, 1 Field Goal)
2 Points - Chris Hicks (1 Try)
1 Point - Nathan Hindmarsh
Parramatta Eels (12)
Tries: Chris Hicks, Jarryd Hayne
Field Goals: Luke Burt (0/1)
Conversions: Luke Burt (2/2)
Sydney Roosters (13)
Tries: Jason Ryles, Brad Takairangi
Field Goals: Braith Anasta (1/4)
Conversions: Braith Anasta (2/2)
LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary Parramatta has not been a happy place for the home side this year - although nor has anyone else. The Eels will be aiming to win at least one of the last two matches to avoid the wooden spoon, while the Roosters can restore some respectability with a few wins at the end of a tough year.
Toyota Cup went the way of the visiting Roosters side. They continued their rich vein of form with a 40-10 victory tonight, and still remain hopeful of a top four finish. The loss for Parramatta means they have an uphill battle to make the eight when they face Gold Coast next week.
Very little in the way of changes tonight - Parramatta are as per program, while the Roosters have opted to swap starting hooker Jake Friend with interchange hooker Anthony Mitchell, with the latter to start the match at dummy half.
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The Roosters are on the park in their 2002-themed alternate heritage strip. Parramatta are on the park now in their home jerseys, where the Prostate Cancer Foundation takes frontage in place of regular sponsor Pirtek.
1 min: The game is underway and in the first set the Eels come up with an error. Roosters with the feed 30m out.
2 min: FUI! Huge hit by the big unit, Lama Tasi smashed!
4 min: Penalty Eels coming out of their own end. BREAKING: Roosters to be served with breach notice for excessive late changes not reported to match officials.
7 min: Hindmarsh loses it but the Roosters hand it straight back. The Eels then break through the line but a few plays later it's not happening and the ball's in touch.
10 min: Quality stuff from Braith Anasta, about 35m out on the last pokes a well-weighted kick into the corner which holds up and forces Jarryd Hayne to knock it dead. Line dropout.
11 min: VIDEO REFEREE - possible Roosters try. Checking whether Hayne or a Rooster grounded it first...
11 min: NO TRY - line drop out Eels.
15 min: Both teams settling into this contest as we remain scoreless - it's a battle for field position as both sides play their footy in the middle third of the field.
17 min: Ryan Morgan safe under the Anasta high ball only a minute or two after Chris Hicks showed his prowess. The Eels are handling the high ball well tonight.
19 min: The "slippery conditions" (also known as the hand of Jason Ryles) force an Eels error which gives the Roosters the upper hand and some good field position. The end of the set brings up another Anasta bomb which is again dealt with by Chris Hicks.
22 min: After more attacking the Roosters still can't cross the Eels line. Now on 22 minutes we have a double knock on starting with Minichiello inside his own territory. Eels ball.
22 min: Eels held up. Roosters to work it off their own line.
26 min: Errors aplenty costing both sides here, neither side looks remotely like scoring just yet.
31 min: Finally the Roosters surge upfield. They're throwing the ball around, now on the last tackle a short ball inside but great defence by Eels' centre Ben Smith.
35 min: TRY
TRY Parramatta Eels
Scored by Chris Hicks. Conversion attempt by Luke Burt successful.
Parramatta finally open the scoring with a long range effort to Chris Hicks. Burt converts.
Parramatta Eels 6-0
40 min: HALFTIME at Parramatta Stadium and the Eels have a slender lead over the Roosters with that great try before the break. Either side could win this but they need to be better in attack.
42 min: Parramatta with the early ascendency in the second half. They're peppering the Roosters' line...
43 min: Ohhhhhh.... Chris Hicks misses the cutout pass and it finds the touch judge instead. Almost bagged a double in his 200th game!
50 min: TRY Media Mantarays
TRY Parramatta Eels
Scored by Jarryd Hayne. Conversion attempt by Luke Burt successful.
Jarryd Hayne scores his sixth try of the season and has showed why he's a better fullback than five-eighth. Burt converts and the Eels lead 12-0.
Parramatta Eels 12-0
55 min: Plenty more pressure from the Eels on the Roosters line but their defence is up to the task for now. This is the most enthusiasm seen from the Eels since they almost beat the Storm a few weeks ago, the Roosters will do well to peg them back from here.
60 min: Tim Mannah looks injured, he tries getting up to play the ball but he's a bit too ginger.
63 min: The latest raid from the Eels comes up short, an attempted pass goes wrong and results in an Eels knock-on and Roosters scrum. Visitors are on their own 20m line feeding this one.
65 min: Finally some threatening footy from the Roosters, they have an overlap but Burt taps the ball over the sideline in an attempted intercept. Scrum to the visitors 10m out, they need points desperately.
66 min: From the scrum the Roosters spread it back to the left and again there's a knocked-down intercept. Roosters scrum again, 10m out...
68 min: TRY
TRY Sydney Roosters
Scored by Jason Ryles. Conversion attempt by Braith Anasta successful.
Ryles barges over! Game on! Anasta converts. Further replays suggest Ryles has dropped it or Hindmarsh raked it out... but it's too late now!
Parramatta Eels 12-6
69 min: Worrying times for Parramatta, another late match lead slipping slowly away. Eels lead 12-6 now but some momentum with the visitors following that try...
72 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT
Luke Burt takes a stab at a field goal with ten minutes to go. It floats wide.
Parramatta Eels 12-6
75 min: TRY
TRY Sydney Roosters
Scored by Brad Takairangi. Conversion attempt by Braith Anasta successful.
Wow. Parramatta just can't hold a lead! Five remaining and Brad Takairangi is in, Anasta... from the sideline... IT'S THERE! 12-all with five to go and all the running with Sydney.
76 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT Dewsbury Rams (NL1)
Anasta tries a field goal... it's charged down. SIX AGAIN ROOSTERS! Here we go...
77 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT Dewsbury Rams (NL1)
I don't know how to describe what I just saw... Anasta attempted the field goal, Hayne charged it down and soccered it 80 metres before Anasta recovered it ahead of him and then Phil Graham broke back upfield!
78 min: The Roosters work it back into good field position after the Graham line break but they go on to lose it and the Eels hold on for now. The pace, which has been breakneck for the last five minutes, has slowed down.
80 min: Fuifui Moimoi spills it on halfway with 45 seconds to go. Roosters with a few tackles and a chance...
80 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT Dewsbury Rams (NL1)
Braith is charged down with seconds on the clock.
FULLTIME and that will take us to GOLDEN POINT. Wow. Parramatta will play their fourth golden point game of the year - they've lost two of them and drawn the other... can they get this one? The Roosters' last golden point match saw them lose 21-20 against South Sydney a few weeks ago.
81 min: Fuifui Moimoi drops it inside his own half in the opening set of Golden Point. Roosters with it.
81 min: FIELD GOAL Dewsbury Rams (NL1)
FIELD GOAL Sydney Roosters
Field goal attempt by Braith Anasta successful.
That's it - Anasta nails the field goal and the Roosters are home! The Eels will head north to try shedding the wooden spoon after giving up a 12-0 lead here at home tonight.
Sydney Roosters 13-12