You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content

The Eels have knocked out defending champions North Queensland in the opening quarter-final with a tense, last-minute 17-11 win on the back of another Chris Sandow masterclass.

One of the stars of the weekend so far, Sandow looked to have opened the scoring three minutes in with a step and run at the line but the ball came free as he went to ground it.

Instead it was the Cowboys who went in first following a fast tap-restart from Kyle Feldt that caught the Eels napping, with hooker Jake Granville going through the line shortly after to score under the posts for a seven-point lead.

Some Sandow magic levelled the scores shortly after; he was flattened as he chased a chip he put in for himself but Corey Norman ran through and pickpocketed it from the defence and promoted the ball to the bonus zone.

After a tense end-to-end battle for five minutes of the second half, the Eels turned a nothing set into points when a Corey Norman cross-field kick was swooped on by Bureta Faraimo out wide.

A right-side shift started by Robert Lui caught the Eels short and Justin O'Neill ran around to score his fourth try of the weekend and level up at 11-all with under two minutes remaining.

Corey Norman provided the heroics for the Eels, a straightforward step-and-go at the line allowing him to jink over. Reece Robinson watched the shot-clock count down to one second before casually snapping the tricky field goal for a six-point lead in the shadows of full-time.

The Cowboys had one final chance as the final siren sounded but Eels half Luke Kelly won the foot race to a chip ahead from North Queensland and sent the ball sailing out past the dead ball line as his side celebrated a semi-finals berth.

Follow Sunday's action as it happens in's live blog


Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

Premier Partner

Media Partners

Major Partners

View All Partners