NRL 2023 Round 2 highlights: Eels’ horror start to season continues as Sharks win 30-26 over Parramatta

Last year they were 80-minutes away from ending the NRL’s longest premiership drought, but Parramatta now face a 0-5 start to 2023. Check out all the talking points from the round.

They were 80 minutes away from ending the longest premiership drought in the NRL last year but with some brutal matches on the horizon the Eels now face a potential 0-5 start to the season after losing to Cronulla.

A 30-26 defeat at home on Friday night marks a nightmare result for the Parramatta side, which head north to face Manly next week before a grand final rematch and then a showdown against the Roosters at Allianz Stadium.

They will start outsiders in all three of those games with last year’s dream after blowing golden chances against weak opposition in both their games to start the season.

“It’s not ideal, but it’s a good challenge for us,” said Brad Arthur.

“The last few seasons, we’ve started the season really well so it’s a good challenge. We’ll learn something about our group.”

Mitch Moses had the crowd on their feet when he dummyed to score late in the first half and then trimmed the margin to four points when he backed up a J’Maine Hopgood break, but it was an otherwise quiet night for them and Partner Dylan in half. brown.

It is impossible to fix the damage on his contract negotiations, but surely a resolution one way or another will allow everyone to focus solely on footy and not have to deal with constant media speculation.

The halfback is clearly trying his hardest and showed that when he chased down Ronaldo Mulitalo into open pastures, but that effort also counted for nothing as Will Kennedy moved a play later and passed Moses’ 200. th NRL game and completed his hat-trick to ruin Jnr. Paulo’s 150th for the Eels.

“Milestones are very important so we are disappointed for Mitch and Junior,” said Arthur.

“But it doesn’t matter whether it is a milestone or not. Every game is important.”

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Penrith’s victory comes at a price

Jarom Lewis says next week’s bye is a “blessing in disguise” as he and halfback Nathan Cleary prepare to go in for scans to assess their foot injuries.

Cleary leapt over just before half-time and did not take a shot to convert Izak Tagoe’s pointed effort after he was caught awkwardly while trying to tackle Alex Johnson.

He was given the green light to resume and looked to be fine in the second half, while it was later revealed that Lui also suffered a foot injury after leaving the shed in a moon boot following a 16–10 win over the Rabbitohs. were battling with.

“I’m just crushed. Jamon salmon did it. 2-0 for him,” Lui laughed after the game.

“No, I can’t remember who did it. It’s just a bit stretched, but we have the weekend off so it’ll be sweet.

“I think it happened in the first half. It’s a blessing in disguise (we have a bye).

The extra week off could be crucial for Cleary, who will fancy redemption after being sent off in 2022 in the same clash against the Eels at Combebank Stadium.

“It’s okay. I caught it in an awkward position just before the interval. It felt a bit awkward for a while but then I finished the game and it’s feeling good now,” he said, adding that teammate Brian Too revealed who pinned them.

“Bizzja’s big ass fell on my ankle. Beautiful.”

No crack in windshield: Panthers warn doubters

Evan Cleary must have stocked up on the Seely’s All Clear as there was no crack in the windscreen as the premiers bounced back from a shock loss last week to send an ominous message to their doubters on a controversial night out in the West that left a fan kicked out. Allegedly racially abusing Latrell Mitchell.

Mitchell suggested during the week that Penrith had a few chinks in their armor after being beaten by the Broncos, but that they should not have hit the bear as the Panthers overcame South Sydney 16–10.

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The two-time defending premiers made the Rabbitohs second class for 70 minutes as they invited their rivals into the lion’s den and feasted on a team that had been announced as title contenders just five days earlier.

It was Penrith’s tenth win in their last 11 matches against the South, with opposition players unlikely to question their aura again after one of the most impressive performances by any team this season.

The Panthers played like it was a final match, and on this form it would not be surprising if they were popping champagne in October after making headlines for spraying players a week earlier.

nathan in the clear

Panthers fans can rest easy after superstar halfback Nathan Cleary suffered a major ankle injury in the first half.

The playmaker injured his left foot when teammate Brian To’o joined the pair to pull Alex Johnson with 80 seconds left in the first half.

After a goal by Isaac Tagoe on the stroke of halftime, Cleary hobbled and did not take a shot on goal, Stephen Crichton stepping into the conversion slot to make it 10–0 at the break.

Penrith’s medical staff worked on Cleary’s leg during the break, when asked by a club official how serious the injury was, he messaged “he’s fine”.

ugly scene

There was more drama at halftime when a fan stormed out of BlueBeat Stadium for allegedly racially abusing Mitchell as he headed towards the tunnel.

This incident will certainly attract the attention of the Integrity Unit, who will need to investigate what was said.

It was a brave performance from Mitchell, who battled a knee injury last week and finished with a team-high six tackle busts on Thursday.

The Souths could not repeat what they did against Cronulla, their first try coming in the form of a dubious pass from Michael Chee Kam as Johnson held on before Isaiah Tass scored a spectacular solo effort at the death. Made my first attempt at the site.

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center court

It took the teams 40 minutes to register the first line break of the night, but the wait was well worth it as Jerome Louis pounced on a loose ball to set up Izak Tiago for a special try on the stroke of halftime.

It was fitting that Luke Garner was the man who popped the offload as he already had two tries disallowed – one courtesy of a piece of defensive brilliance by Mitchell, while the other should have been awarded.

Tiago’s try came after 36 minutes after center partner Stephen Crichton had opened the scoring for a third-straight game after he finished off some entertaining play which included a few passes from the props and a long spiral from Kenny.

thank you doc

The very vocal minority of people against the independent doctor better begin to reconsider their stance after the man in the bunker noticed some dangerous conditions and let the players out to check on their health.

The role of the independent doctor was questioned by some coaches in the first round, but Thursday night showed how valuable it is to have someone in the bunker to support the club doctors, taking advantage of lots of camera angles that might have missed a few. Have gone

Mitch Kenny made an awkward tackle on Tom Burgess while making a tackle and was ordered off the field for an HIA after showing a category two signal.

He returned 15 minutes later, while team-mate Sonny Luke was also assessed and then cleared afterwards as the pair continued their exciting partnership.

Originally published as NRL 2023 Round 2 highlights: Eels’ horror start to season continues as Sharks win 30-26 over Parramatta

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