Rugby League

Raiders roll Eels with big second half

February 18, 2024 7:15 am

[Source: NRL]

Three tries in the space of nine minutes lifted the Raiders to a 38-16 victory over the Eels, which saw them claim the maximum 15 Pre-Season Challenge points on offer.

Having failed to win either of their games in last year’s Pre-Season Challenge, the Raiders burned their opponents with a red-hot period late in the third quarter which saw them score 18 points between the 52nd and 61st minutes at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium in Sydney.

Having also hit the threshold of five line breaks and 10 offloads, in addition to scoring at least five tries, the Raiders claimed all of the available bonus points which go towards determining winner of the $100,000 challenge.

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Raiders centre hopeful James Schiller boosted his prospects with a strong performance in which provided a try assist for Jed Stuart – son of head coach Ricky – and scored a stunning 105-metre effort of his own after he collected a wayward Eels kick and took it to the house.

Despite the result, Parra will likely take plenty of positives from the hit out, which included good showings from players in two of their positions that are up for grabs ahead of Round 1.

Sean Russell was busy on the wing and had a first half try, while hooker Brendan Hands took advantage of his chance to shine in the absence of his biggest positional rival, Joey Lussick, with an assured game.

While Parra raced out to an early 10-0 lead with tries to Ofahiki Ogden and Russell, the Raiders eventually found their feet and hit back with a try to Kaeo Weekes off a clever Nick Cotric kick and another to train-and-trial prop Peter Taateo.

Following a lengthy review from the Bunker, Bailey Simmonson’s 45-minute put down was cleared, but minutes later Schiller changed the game with his two try involvements.

Further tries to Peter Hola, Adam Cook and Noah Martin blew the scoreline out.

In other matches, Knights won their NRL preseason defeating Sharks 44-18 last night.

Other matches saw Bulldogs winning 24-12 against Storm, Sea Eagles losing to Roosters 36-22 while Rabbitohs defeated Dragons 28-6.

Today will see Warriors taking on Wests Tigers, Cowboys faces Broncos while Dolphins meets Titans.