The Darwin public have been witness to one of the most impressive comebacks of 2019 after the Parramatta Eels scored 22 unanswered points to take a 22-16 victory at TIO Stadium.
Parramatta were looking for their fifth victory in six trips to the Northern Territory but that victory looked a forlorn hope early on as the green machine began the game with dominance forcing the Eels to work out of their own corners of the field. The opening points came for Canberra in just the fourth minute when Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad got the ball off a short pass and ran through a yawning gap to score.
The Green Machine then added a second try just over 10 minutes later when Jack Wighton made an appearance at dummy-half on last tackle before deciding to go himself and got over the line and score for the Raiders. The Raiders held a 12-0 lead and they extended that lead when Sebastian Kris was able to jump high and get over Maika Sivo to score in the corner. Jarrod Croker hit the post with the conversion which meant the score stayed 16-0.
Parramatta started to find momentum at the backend of the first half and they added two late tries which include a classic solo effort from Manu Ma'u who went himself and pulled out one of the games greatest dummies and then a goose step to get over the line. The blue and gold then closed the gap to just 4 when Blake Ferguson used all his skills and more to get over the try line and keep himself in to score. Mitch Moses parted the posts with his conversion and the Raiders held just a 4 point lead at the break.
The momentum swing continued in the second half as the Eels were able to gain ascendancy over the Raiders with two solo tries. The first came through Blake Ferguson the veteran winger was on the spot to take an errant pass from Croker and Ferguson raced 80m to score untouched which gave Parramatta the lead for the first time in the match.
The second of the Eels tries in the second half came when Mitch Moses was able to go down the left short-side and make good metres through some poor defence to extend the lead out to 22-16. The Raiders tried to get back level but their miracle plays failed to come off and they succumbed to the 22-16 defeat.
Next week, the two sides have the bye before the Eels are at Bankwest as the away team against the Tigers whilst the Raiders are away to the St George Illawarra Dragons at WIN Stadium.