Gutherson nails Eels' NRL win over Raiders

Parramatta's 25-24 golden-point victory over Canberra has come at a cost, with star halfback Mitchell Moses suffering a suspected calf injury.

MITCHELL MOSES of the Eels in action during the NRL match between the South Sydney Rabbitohs and the Parramatta Eels at ANZ Stadium in Sydney, Australia.
MITCHELL MOSES of the Eels in action during the NRL match between the South Sydney Rabbitohs and the Parramatta Eels at ANZ Stadium in Sydney, Australia. Picture: Mark Nolan/Getty Images

An 87th-minute field goal to Clint Gutherson has delivered Parramatta a dramatic 25-24 golden-point NRL victory over a plucky Canberra outfit.

However the win might come at a cost, with star halfback Mitchell Moses suffering a suspected calf injury in the first half of Saturday night's contest.

Moses appeared to show signs of discomfort when trying to come off the defensive line before eventually limping off Bankwest Stadium.

Parramatta looked set to overcome the loss of their chief playmaker when they surged to a 12-point lead with 12 minutes remaining.

However, the Raiders stormed back to force extra time through two Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad tries in three minutes.

The Canberra fullback pounced on a George Williams kick in the 76th minute, before finishing off an Elliott Whitehead line break in the return set.

Jack Wighton, Gutherson and Williams all had looks at a game-winning field goal in the first period of extra time, but all failed to convert.

But the Eels captain didn't waste his second opportunity, from 30 metres out, to seal Parramatta's sixth win from seven games.

"They all think they can kick field goals, so they all practise at the end of training but Mitch and Gutho did a bit in the pre-season," Eels coach Brad Arthur said.

"They do practise them after training. We've got a few of our forwards that fancy themselves as well. We talk to Gutho about practising his goalkicking, too."

The Eels remain on top of the ladder, while the Raiders have lost three of their past four matches and might drop as low as seventh.

It was a thrilling finish to a contest which was almost moved after two ACL injuries to Sydney Roosters players on Friday prompted an emergency inspection.

The surface was cleared on Saturday morning by the league, however both teams were instructed to warm up in the sheds instead of on the ground.

The adjustment failed to deter Parramatta, who claimed the opening points through a routine right-side shift for Ryan Matterson to score.

The Raiders hit back through Josh Papalii, and also benefited from a blatant forward pass which ended in Whitehead crossing.

There was a flashpoint when Corey Horsburgh reacted angrily to tackle by Matterson, before exiting with a suspected foot injury.

Moses limped from the field soon after, and the Eels were expected to falter.

But Parramatta dominated most of the second half, regaining the lead through Ray Stone before their dangerous left edge exposed Canberra's frail right.

Michael Jennings latched onto a Shaun Lane offload, before Maika Sivo finished off a Gutherson cutout, only for Canberra to roar home.

The Raiders will anxiously await the match review report with Josh Hodgson and Jordan Rapana cited over separate incidents.

Hodgson was booked for a tackle around Eels winger Blake Ferguson's neck, while Rapana might be in hot water for a swinging arm on Sivo.

"We didn't deserve to be in that position. It's amazing how they got back to that scoreline," Raiders coach Ricky Stuart said.

"I'll never debate that they never give in. I've said that for years - you can never win a game of football in the first half but you can lose it."


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