Eels slay Dragons in stadium swansong

The Parramatta Eels’time at Pirtek Stadium has ended in a 30-18 win over the St George-Illawarra Dragons.
Nanjing Night Net

Rookie fullback Bevan French scored a hat-trick for the Eels to take his season tally to 16 tries in just 12 games.

Along with five-eighth Clint Gutherson, Eels coach Brad Arthur was full of praise for his young charges.

“Him and Clint Gutherson, every time you tell them something, they make sure they go out of their way to try and improve it.”

“While they keep doing that, they’ll have a long time in the game and a long time at this club.”

The Eels were never really troubled by the Dragons, with two late tries to the visitors flattering the scoreline.

Arthur reiterated his pride in the playing group despite disappointment they wouldn’t be playing finals football.

“I know I keep saying it but there hasn’t been a lot to want to play for but they still manage to keep hanging in there and playing for each other,” Arthur said.

“We played some really good footy tonight. We built pressure on the back of our defence and it’s just unfortunate that it has to end like this.”

It was an emotional night for the Eels, honouring the lives of foundation player Mitch Wallace and Eels Hall of Fame member Ken Thornett, both passing away in the past fortnight.

The win was also the club’s swansong at Pirtek Stadium before demolition, mirroring the result of the first match at the ground when the Eels defeated the St George Dragons 36-6 on March 5 1986.

The Eels’final game of the 2016 campaign is Sunday afternoon against the New Zealand Warriors in New Zealand.

 

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