It was well over a year ago that Parramatta last made the trek down to Canberra Stadium in what remains one of the more bizarre games of the 2012 season.
A game that went in runs of tries to each team, Parramatta opened the scoring after seven minutes when Ryan Morgan was first to a Joseph Paulo grubber.
But it was all Canberra for the rest of the opening half, with Reece Robinson crossing from a brilliant Jarrod Croker flick pass, Joel Thompson gathering a Sam Williams bomb, Blake Ferguson running the length of the field after a stray Eels kick and Josh Papalii proving too strong from close range.
That made it 24-6 at the break before it was Parramatta’s turn to go back-to-back. Quick hands to the right saw Cheyse Blair crash over and when Jarryd Hayne threw a lovely cut-out ball to Ken Sio the margin was back to six.
Canberra then looked to have put the result beyond all doubt when they went on another rush for Thompson and Robinson to both score their second of the afternoon, but the Eels had other thoughts.
Trailing 36-18 with eight minutes remaining, Morgan grabbed his second in the left corner, Sio his second in the right and when Chris Sandow was on the spot to score next to the posts the Eels had suddenly slashed the difference to two points with almost three minutes remaining.
Alas, they couldn’t pull off the miracle with Jack Wighton breaking through and running 60 metres to ensure the Raiders won a highly entertaining contest 40-34.
Parramatta enjoyed 54 per cent of possession and made 160 metres more than their opponents. They also made 273 tackles to Canberra’s 315 but couldn’t finish the job.
Seven Raiders ran for over 100 metres with Wighton making 147 metres and six tackle-breaks. Tim Mannah ran for 166 metres for the visitors.