Opening night of the 2023 NRL season went down to the wire with Melbourne Storm came out victorious v Parramatta Eels after Harry Grant's match-winning TRY at golden point Sports Benches

Opening night of the 2023 NRL season went down to the wire with Melbourne Storm came out victorious v Parramatta Eels after Harry Grant’s match-winning TRY at golden point

by Admin
  • Match: Parramatta Eels v Melbourne Storm
  • NRL 2023 Telstra Premiership Round 1
  • Venue: CommBank Stadium in Parramatta

Harry Grant wins a thrilling game for Melbourne Storm in Golden Point to kick off the NRL season in the right way. Second half tries from Nick Meaney and Young Tonumaipea helped Storm fight back in a close game at Parramatta.

Cameron Munster was the talking point as he went off in the late stages of the first half with a compound fracture to his finger but he came back on in the second half and was crucial in the opening game.

Parramatta opened the scoring after Mitchell Moses converted a penalty he won when he was hit late by Eliesa Katoa. The Eels have Josh Hodgson to thank for being in that position as the Englishman did what he does best – one on one steals. 2-0

The Eels looked like they were in with the first try of the season with great attacking play, but Isaac Lumelume couldn’t ground it to put Melbourne under more pressure.

Hodgson looked to grow into the game as he put a great kick in that nearly put Waqa Blake in but it was knocked out for a dropout. The dropout benefited Storm as Cameron Munster went short and reaped the rewards as Parramatta dropped it under the pressure.

Melbourne started to attack more and more as Munster put in attacking kicks to confuse the Eels’ defense before he suffered a compound fracture to his finger. Moses was then hit late again this time by Alec Macdonald, but the penalty came of nothing.

It took 30 minutes for the first try as Will Penisini found a clear path five metres out as Hodgson plays a great pass to Clinton Gutherson who lets Penisini in. Moses missed the conversion.6-0.

Melbourne, late in the first half, lost their Captain’s Challenge as Jahrome Hughes had the ball knocked out but it was considered a knock on.

Half Time – Parramatta Eels 6-0 Melbourne Storm

Meaney scored a great try seven minutes in the second half as Grant shows his skill running from dummy half and Josh King performed a great pass turn to put Meaney over. Meaney converted his own try. 6-6.

Junior Paulo put Parramatta ahead again as Hodgson created the space to put the prop forward in a great position to run 15 metres to score his first try of the season. Moses converted the try. 12-6.

Melbourne replied with a try of their own four minutes later after it looked like Nelson Asofa-Solomona went over but that was disallowed for two knock ons. From the scrum, Melbourne took the ball left as Tonumaipea went over in the corner, but Munster created that try with a great pass to himself to trick the Eels edge. Meaney converted the try to level it. 12-12.

Tyran Wishart was let off massively as he dropped a big bomb that could put the Eels ahead but then Parramatta put the ball out for a seven tackle set. Parramatta got the ball back and set up for the one pointer, but it was blocked by three defenders.

No one wanted to win this game it seemed as all the chances in the last five minutes were fumbled. Melbourne get a lifeline as they get a penalty to put Munster in a great position to win the game. Munster scuffs the kick and the opening game of the NRL season goes to golden point.

The game was won by Grant as he does his trademark jinking runs and breaks through to extend Craig Bellamy’s round one winning streak.

Full Time – Parramatta Eels 12-16 Melbourne Storm (AET)

Parramatta triesMelbourne tries
Penisini (30′), Paulo (59′)Meaney (47’), Tonumaipea (63’), Grant (83’)
Moses 2/3Meaney 2/2

Team Lists

Parramatta EelsMelbourne Storm
1. Clinton Gutherson1. Nick Meaney
2. Maika Sivo2. Will Warbrick
3. Will Pensini3. Reimis Smith
4. Waqa Blake4. Young Tounmaipea
5. Isaac Lumelume (22)5. Xavier Coates
6. Dylan Brown6. Cameron Munster
7. Mitchell Moses7. Jahrome Hughes
8. Reagan Campbell-Gillard8. Nelson Asofa-Solomona
9. Josh Hodgson9. Harry Grant
10. Junior Paulo10. Christian Welch
11, Bryce Cartwright11. Trent Loiero
12. Matt Doorey12. Eliesa Katoa
13. J’maine Hopgood13. Josh King
14. Jirah Momoisea14. Tyran Wishart
15. Jack Murchie15. Alec MacDonald
16. Wiremu Greig16. Jordan Grant (17)
17. Makahesi Makatoa17. Bronson Garlick (19)

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