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However, Dragons‘ winger Mikaele Ravalawa had a different plan in mind, setting a personal best with four tries. This impressive feat enabled the Dragons to secure a 10-point lead early in the second half after a run of 20 non-counteracted points.
Brown, returning to the field for the first time since June following a suspension for inappropriate touching, launched a pivotal cross-field kick, setting up Bryce Cartwright‘s second try and as a result, a decisive lead with 10 minutes left on the clock.
To end the season with a winning record, it is imperative the Eels seize victory in two of the next three matches. An intense challenge, considering they are yet to face Penrith and Brisbane – the competition leaders.
Early in the game, Brown’s contributions were pivotal for the Eels. A successful line-break on the left set the Eels on track for their second try after their initial one. Moreover, Brown generated two defensive try-saving plays within the first half.
However, even with such tenacious defence, the Eels were unable to contain Ravalawa, who bested rookie Arthur Miller-Stephen on three separate occasions.
Just ten minutes into the second half of the game, Ravalawa cleverly manoeuvred around Eels’ captain Clint Gutherson and the boundary line, becoming the first Dragon in more than a decade to score four tries in a single match.
As the Eels gained more control over the field they claimed more points, levelling the score as Ryan Matterson made a superb flat pass to Junior Paulo – a surprise try scorer playing the position of prop.
A decisive kick from Brown granted the Eels a lead for the first time since the first half of the game.
In a weekend marked with two dismissals, both Ravalawa and Zac Lomax may count themselves lucky to have stayed on the field after being reported.
Even though a high tackle from Ravalawa on Brown occurred in the first half, it was Lomax’s head-slam on Andrew Davey that appeared to pose more danger.
Another incident, where Ryan Couchman was reported for a high tackle on Parramatta halfback Mitch Moses, was also noted.
Courtesy of League Initiative.