Warrior flair outclasses battered Eels

The New Zealand Warriors have defeated the Parramatta Eels 36-20 in front of 12,102 fans at Parramatta Stadium tonight, but the big news to come out of the match was the injury to Eels fullback Jarryd Hayne.

Parramatta were buoyed by the news Jarryd Hayne and Willie Tonga would make their returns from injury when the teamlists were confirmed an hour before kickoff. However this news was tempered when captain Nathan Hindmarsh was ruled out after suffering badly from a virus.

The Eels opened the match in entertaining, if not surprising, fashion when they manufactured two tries in the opening 10 minutes of play. The first try was scored by winger Ken Sio after five-eighth Ben Roberts took the ball to the line and delivered a perfect right to left cutout pass which drew in Warriors centre Konrad Hurrell leaving Sio with a clear passage to the tryline. With almost his first touch of the match Hayne was in the thick of the action as he ran the ball on the last tackle before replicating Roberts' pass but on the western side of the field which saw Cheyse Blair score untouched. Chris Sandow's conversion attempts were both unsuccessful but the Eels had started the game well and took an early 8-0 lead.

The Warriors were starved of possession early in the game but once they received their share of the ball they made the Eels pay. Second-rower Feleti Mateo opened the visitors scoring in the 12th minute. Fellow second-rower Elijah Taylor took the ball to the defence and drew two Eels players before delivering a perfect around-the-corner and Mateo dived over alongside the posts.

In the 16th minute the Eels suffered a major body blow when Jarryd Hayne was taken off the field on a stretcher after hearing a pop in his knee as he picked up a kick from Nathan Friend at dummy half. The early diagnosis from the Eels dressing room was a ruptured capsule surrounding the knee, but not a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament.

The Warriors added insult to injury when they took the lead in the 19th minute when winger Bill Tupou kept his width after Maloney and Locke combined to run a second-man play which left Tupou untouched. The Warriors further extended their lead in the 29th minute off the base of the scrum through Konrad Hurrell. Five-eighth James Maloney found the rampaging centre who ran straight over the top of Ben Roberts to score alongside the posts.

In the shadows of halftime Hurrell made a costly error when the Warriors looked to move the ball off their own line. Eels halfback Sandow raced out of the line and delivered a big shoulder charge on the stocky centre which saw the ball come loose. Sandow won the race to the ball and scored the try. His conversion attempt saw the Eels trail at the break by four points.

The opening 20 minutes of the second half was an arm wrestle between both sides as they looked to gain the upper hand. The Warriors finally extended their lead in the 62nd minute with arguably the best try of the night. It was the Warriors at their best as the leadup work saw the ball go through no fewer than nine sets of hands before James Maloney pushed up through the middle to score the try. The Eels, however, were not deterred and set up a grandstand finish in the 68th minute when  Chris Sandow sliced through the Warriors defence in a superb individual try. Another two tries in the final seven minutes by the Warriors, one scored by Kevin Locke and the other an 80 metre effort by winger Bill Tupou ensured New Zealand opened their account for 2012.

Match Details

Parramatta Eels 20 were defeated by New Zealand Warriors 36

National Rugby League - Round 2 - Monday March 12, 2012 7:00pm

Venue: Parramatta Stadium

Referee: Gavin Badger and Brett Suttor

Video Referee: Paul Simpkins

Touch Judges: David Abood and Chris Butler

Crowd: 12,102

Halftime: Parramatta Eels 14 New Zealand Warriors 18

Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:
3 Points - James Maloney (1 Try, 6 Conversions)
2 Points - Chris Sandow (2 Tries, 2 Conversions)
1 Point - Kevin Locke (1 Try)

PARRAMATTA EELS (20)
Tries: Chris Sandow (2), Cheyse Blair, Ken Sio
Conversions: Chris Sandow (2/4)

NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS (36)
Tries: Feleti Mateo, James Maloney, Kevin Locke, Bill Tupou (2), Konrad Hurrell
Conversions: James Maloney (6/6)

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Round 2 action in the 2012 NRL season wraps up tonight at Parramatta Stadium with both sides looking to get their season off the mark. With 25 minutes to go in Toyota Cup the Warriors lead the Eels 26-22.

We are just awaiting confirmation for team changes with rumours rife Jarryd Hayne will make his return after Luke Burt and Justin Horo played for Wentworthville yesterday in the NSW Cup.

TEAM NEWS: Jarryd Hayne and Willie Tonga make their return, but lose Nathan Hindmarsh who will be replaced by Joseph Paulo.

The Warriors have the one minor change with Ben Henry coming into the run-on side and Krisnan Inu drops back to the bench.

The Toyota Cup match between the Warriors and Eels has just been completed with the junior Kiwis running out 38-26 victors.

1 min:  The Warriors get us underway here tonight and the will defend the southern end of Parramatta Stadium for the first half.

1 min:  The Eels make good ground with their first use of the ball and run the ball on the last!

1 min:  A scramble for the ball sees the Eels with possession and on the attack.

3 min:  Sandow's kick to the corner is taken well by Vatuvei who throws a speculator out the back which is luckily dived on by his teammate a metre off his own line.

4 min:  The Eels on the attack with good field position courtesy of a solid defensive set.

6 min:   TRY  
TRY Parramatta Eels
Scored by Ken Sio. Conversion attempt by Chris Sandow unsuccessful.

The Eels start the scoring tonight with five-eighth Ben Roberts throwing a perfect right to left cutout pass which hits Sio on the chest! The winger made no mistake by holding the pass and diving over in the corner. Sandow's conversion attempt from the touchline swings to the near side of the posts.
Parramatta Eels 4-0

7 min:  PENALTY Eels. The Warriors hang on too long in the ruck for referee Badger's liking.

8 min:   TRY  
TRY Parramatta Eels
Scored by Cheyse Blair. Conversion attempt by Chris Sandow unsuccessful.

The Eels are in again! And it was Jarryd Hayne with the cutout pass which took out two Warriors defenders and Blair had an unimpeded 15m stroll to the tryline. Sandow's conversion attempt from the western touchline stays to the right of the posts.
Parramatta Eels 8-0

11 min:  The Warriors pick up the ball after Mannah tried to throw an unnecessary pass out the back.

11 min:  PENALTY Warriors. High contact from Roberts and Maitua and the visitors will go on the attack.

12 min:   TRY  
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by Feleti Mateo. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.

Mateo takes advantage of the Warriors first trip into the Eels 20m zone. Elijah Taylor's offload took in two defenders and Mateo dived over alongside the posts.
Parramatta Eels 8-6

14 min:  PENALTY Warriors. Keating ruled to have stripped the ball in a two-man tackle.

16 min:  Hayne picked up the kick from the Warriors and sprinted 20 metres downfield before falling to the ground in agony. A lot of concern shown here for the Eels fullback.

16 min:  Hayne is a sorry sight on the back of the medicab as it makes its way off the ground.

17 min:  Roberts' clearing kick skews back towards the western side of the ground before Locke picks it up and is hit in a solid tackle.

17 min:  Paulo's pass to O'Hanlon is knocked on by the second rower.

18 min:  Early reports from the Eels dressing room is Hayne heard something pop in his knee.

19 min:  PENALTY Warriors. High tackle against Matt Keating.

19 min:   TRY  
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by Bill Tupou. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.

The Warriors hit the lead through Bill Tupou! A second-man play was run by Maloney who passed out the back to Locke who held the pass up before finding Tupou unmarked and the winger sprinted 20m to score in the corner. Maloney's conversion attempt from the sideline scrapes inside the right post.
New Zealand Warriors 12-8

22 min:  Maloney's kick on the fifth tackle sails out on the full and the Eels will have good field position.

23 min:  PENALTY Eels. Mateo penalised for a lazy high tackle.

24 min:  The Eels take on the Warriors line but Sandow's pass is unluckily called forward with the hands on replay clearly going backwards.

26 min:  PENALTY Eels. Two men in the tackle when the ball was stripped.

27 min:  Roberts kicks early in the tackle count but it ricochets off the legs of the Warriors and into the hands of Konrad Hurrell.

27 min:  PENALTY Warriors. Justin Poore tried to get away with a sneaky hand on the ball in the play-the-ball but the referees weren't tricked.

28 min:  Locke kicks in behind the Warriors defence but Sio wins the race to the ball and knocks it over the touchline. Warriors scrum.

29 min:   TRY  
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by Konrad Hurrell. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.

The Warriors extend their lead through big centre Konrad Hurrell. Maloney's pass from the base of the scrum isolated Ben Roberts at five-eighth and Hurrell ran straight over the top of the Eels playmaker to score alongside the posts. Maloney again adds the extras from beside the posts.
New Zealand Warriors 18-8

32 min:  Johnson attempts a 40/20 for the Warriors but it crosses the sideline just short of the 20m line.

32 min:  Further news from the Eels dressing room is the injury to Hayne is not as bad as first feared, with scar tissue believed to have made the popping sound the fullback originally heard.

34 min:  PENALTY Eels. Manu ruled to have knocked Blair out of the way and preventing the Eels winger from making a play at the ball.

36 min:   TRY  
TRY Parramatta Eels
Scored by Chris Sandow. Conversion attempt by Chris Sandow successful.

Somehow the Eels have come up with a try through their defence! Sandow lined up Konrad Hurrell and forced the error after Roberts' kick to the corner forced the visitors to move the ball off their own line. Sandow converts his own try from beside the posts.
New Zealand Warriors 18-14

39 min:  PENALTY Eels. Mannering with a second effort after the tackle was complete.

40 min:  Halftime here at Parramatta Stadium in an action-packed first 40 minutes and the Warriors lead the Eels 18-14.

40 min:  The second half is underway here at Parramatta Stadium and it is the Warriors with the ball.

41 min:  Johnson's kick on the last tackle forces the Eels to work the ball off their own line.

42 min:  The Eels throw the ball around early in the tackle count and Maitua's pass is intercepted by Mannering.

43 min:  Sio does well to take Johnson's spiralling bomb and races back to the 20 for a quick restart.

44 min:  Sandow bombs to Vatuvei's wing and Manu drops the ball but it falls into the hands of a teammate.

46 min:  PENALTY Eels. Packer races up out of the line and catches Fui high.

48 min:  Sandow kicks across field and Tupou knocks the ball on. Eels with another repeat set here.

49 min:  The Warriors scramble defence holds the Eels at bay as Roberts kicks to Vatuvei who takes the bomb.

49 min:  Maloney gets the Warriors out of trouble with a stabbing kick which trickles into touch 10m out from the Eels line.

52 min:  Johnson bombs towards the wing of Blair who takes the ball well despite the attention of Vatuvei.

53 min:  Sandow comes up with a physical tackle on Locke as he tries to lift the Eels and force an error.

54 min:  Elijah Taylor's floating pass misses the mark and sails over the sideline. Eels scrum just short of the halfway line.

55 min:  Tonga gets on the outside of his man and flicks the pass to Blair but the ball is behind the winger and goes into touch.

57 min:  Esi Tonga comes up with a good catch of Maloney's bomb and the are tackled 20m out from their own line.

58 min:  Johnson beats an Eels defender who sprinted off the line before he rolled the ball into the in-goal to force a dropout.

59 min:  PENALTY Warriors. Eels caught offside.

60 min:  The Warriors had worked the overlap out wide but Locke's pass for Tupou went over his head and into touch.

62 min:   TRY  
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by James Maloney. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.

It's the hot potato Warriors as Maloney scores the try! The Warriors kept the ball alive with at least nine players getting a touch of the ball throughout the play and the Eels were unable to close the ball down. Maloney keeps his perfect night with the boot in tact with the conversion beside the posts.
New Zealand Warriors 24-14

64 min:  The Eels will get a chance to set up a grandstand finish after Mannering puts the ball down on the second tackle.

66 min:  Keating's pass from dummy half is knocked on by Casey McGuire and the Warriors hold their 10-point lead.

67 min:  The Warriors knock the ball on again and offer the Eels another chance to get back in the game.

67 min:  Tonga has been hit in a solid tackle by Vatuvei who will be placed on report.

68 min:   TRY  
TRY Parramatta Eels
Scored by Chris Sandow. Conversion attempt by Chris Sandow successful.

Sandow keeps the Eels in the hunt with a superb solo try! The halfback crabbed across field, getting on the outside of Mateo before throwing a dummy and slicing through. Sandow converts his own try and closes the gap back to four points.
New Zealand Warriors 24-20

71 min:  The Warriors touch the ball as the Warriors throw it around and the tackle count restarts.

72 min:  Sandow kicks towards Vatuvei's wing but the Beast takes the ball well.

73 min:   TRY  
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by Kevin Locke. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.

Locke scores the try which should see the Warriors pick up the two competition points! Mateo found Ben Henry out wide before the centre found Vatuvei. Vatuvei raced down the sideline before finding Locke who loomed up in support before sprinting 30 metres to score under the posts. Maloney again adds the extras from in front.
New Zealand Warriors 30-20

75 min:  Knock on both ways. Scrum Eels.

77 min:   TRY  
TRY New Zealand Warriors
Scored by Bill Tupou. Conversion attempt by James Maloney successful.

Tupou ensures the Warriors will take the two points across the Tasman after racing 80 metres untouched. The Eels threw the ball around in desperate search for points but Maloney swooped and found Tupou who did the rest.
New Zealand Warriors 36-20

79 min:  Maloney puts the icing on the cake with a kick into touch 10m out from the Eels line.

80 min:  Fulltime here at Parramatta Stadium and the Warriors have run out 36-20 victors over the Eels.

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