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Jarryd Hayne celebrates with his Parramatta teammates during their Round 23 clash with the Bulldogs.

Despite spending the majority of his post-match press conference on a controversial ruling that may have cost his side a crucial win, Eels coach Brad Arthur also paid tribute to a gutsy effort from his charges that he said made them the better team on the night despite the loss.

Speaking after Parramatta went down 18-16 to Canterbury at ANZ having had a late match-winning try called back over a controversial ruling around how the ball boy restarts play following a 40/20, Arthur said he'd rather focus on the courage and commitment of his side.

"We were the better team," he said.

"We're going to have to [accept the ref's decision]. And we're going to have to make sure we win our next three games to make sure we're in the semi finals, that's all there is to it.

"We can say our piece now but that ain't going to help us, we have to move forward, and we've got to find a way to improve a few little areas to make sure we're good enough to front up against the front runners next week, Manly."

Parramatta's completion rate – just under 70 per cent – was far behind Canterbury's 89 per cent – yet the side dominated much of the second half without being able to find a way to score one more match-winning try.

Eels skipper Jarryd Hayne also said he didn't want the refereeing controversy to take away from what was a good, tough game of football.

"We fought back [from 18-6 down], we were under the pump and for us to have opportunities at the end there to win it – at the end of the day you have to take those opportunities," he said.

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