Heroic win masks major concern for Panthers

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Penrith's defence was outstanding successful the battle-of-the-west shootout against Parramatta connected Saturday nighttime - but the Panthers' onslaught has go a concern.

The squad that was scoring tries similar they were going retired of benignant successful the archetypal fractional of the play has present managed conscionable 1 effort successful each of the past 2 weeks.

And the antheral the spotlight has to autumn connected is classy five-eighth Jarome Luai, who seems to person mislaid his mode successful a agelong and demanding season.

Luai was the signifier pivot of the NRL up until State of Origin, with 14 effort assists and an mean of 73 moving metres per crippled successful the opening 12 rounds.

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But during and aft Origin, Luai has struggled.

From circular 13 until past weekend's choky triumph implicit the Eels, helium has travel up with conscionable 4 effort assists and his mean moving metres person dropped to 46.

Up against Luai adjacent play is the Storm's in-form five-eighth Cameron Munster, who gives the premiers a wide borderline successful attack.

Luai needs to regain his assurance and that sparkling operation with halves spouse Nathan Cleary from a fewer months backmost for the Panthers to person immoderate anticipation of progressing to the expansive final.

Eels extremity Arthur speculation

The Eels dipped retired of the finals successful Mackay - but their brave show against Penrith should beryllium capable to extremity the changeless speculation implicit manager Brad Arthur's future.

The critics who assertion that Parra couldn't purpose up against the NRL's large guns person been silenced by the triumph implicit Melbourne starring into the finals and the constrictive nonaccomplishment to the Panthers.

Indeed, plentifulness of neutrals thought the amended squad mislaid connected Saturday night.

Coach Brad Arthur of the Eels. (Getty)

The Eels took it to the Panthers battalion throughout, with Marata Niukore, Reagan Campbell-Gillard and Junior Paulo relentless.

Mitchell Moses' kicking crippled was superb and Clint Gutherson his accustomed engaged aforesaid astatine the back.

Had a mates of adjacent calls gone their way, it would beryllium the Eels and not the Panthers preparing to look Melbourne adjacent weekend.

Sea Eagles powerfulness on

Manly acceptable records galore successful Friday night's awesome 42-6 decision of the injury-ravaged Roosters successful Mackay.

Marty Taupau - successful his 200th NRL crippled - yet got to notch his archetypal triumph successful finals shot and was each powerfulness up front.

Remarkably, Tom Trbojevic notched his maiden finals triumph arsenic good - and besides equalled Phil Blake's nine grounds 27 tries acceptable successful 1983.

Megastar Manly fullback Tom Trbojevic connected the attack. (NRL Imagery)

Kieran Foran is 1 Manly subordinate who HAS tasted finals occurrence - but not since 2014 - a agelong clip betwixt drinks!

The Sea Eagles were objective against a 'spare parts' Roosters broadside - but volition find the going a batch tougher against Souths adjacent play for a changeable astatine the expansive final.

Brave Roosters tally ends

It's not often a squad tin clasp its caput precocious aft bowing retired of the finals with a 40-point thrashing, but these are unusual times we unrecorded in.

Missing 10 of their champion players done wounded oregon suspension, the Roosters did an astonishing occupation to enactment successful contention arsenic agelong arsenic they did with a squad held unneurotic by sticky tape.

Ben Marschke of the Roosters offloads the shot (Getty)

When you see skipper Boyd Cordner retired without playing a game, and chap veterans Jake Friend and Brett Morris were besides forced to bent up their boots, the Roosters could person thrown successful the towel.

Add to that superior injuries to prima playmaker Luke Keary, roar prop Lindsay Collins, prima centres Joey Manu and Billy Smith, highly-rated rookie Joseph Suaalii, accordant prop Siosiua Taukeiaho and Sam Verrills' suspension and it's astonishing the Roosters didn't suffer by much against a rampaging Manly outfit.

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