Last Time Played: Eels v Dragons
The Dragons got out of jail at the death to defeat the Eels 14-12 at WIN Jubilee Stadium in Round 12.
Having been defeated by one-point margins in each of their previous two games the Dragons looked certain to suffer another narrow loss when they trailed by two points with four minutes remaining before Kyle Stanley dummied his way over to score the match-winner.
Parramatta drew first blood just 90 seconds into the contest when Chris Sandow’s cross-field bomb bounced off Ben Hornby into the arms of a grateful Casey McGuire who crossed to the right of the goalposts.
The home side struck back in remarkably similar fashion with 19 minutes on the clock, with Stanley crossing for his first try in the right corner after collecting Daniel Vidot’s bat-back of a Jamie Soward cross-field bomb.
However, the Dragons trailed by two points when Soward failed the conversion attempt and they fell further behind when Matt Ryan charged over off a Sandow short ball with 24 minutes gone. This provided the visitors with a 12-4 advantage they would take to the halftime break.
A 10-nil shut-out in the second half saw the Dragons escape with the competition points. Brett Morris finished off a long-range raid initiated by Jason Nightingale to bridge the gap to 12-10 in the 46th minute before Stanley’s late strike.
The Dragons were the dominant side in attack, with five line-breaks (to the Eels’ two) and 17 offloads; however they shot themselves in the foot with 14 errors and a poor 68 per cent completion rate.
Their back three of Morris, Vidot and Nightingale combined to run 548 metres on the night.
Parramatta were best served by Sandow (two try assists and three offloads) and fullback Jarryd Hayne who made 18 runs.