Parramatta Eels vs North Queensland Cowboys: Lineups, Preview & Prediction

ANZ Stadium, Sydney, Saturday 16th September, 7:40pm AEST


Sudden death football from here on out makes every game crucial the sides left in the running. Parramatta Eels clash with the North Queensland Cowboys in what shapes to be another intense affair in the race for the Premiership. Eels are coming off a hard-fought loss to the Minor Premiers Melbourne Storm while the Cowboys kept their title hopes alive with a golden point victory at Cronulla.

Despite losing to the Storm last week, the Eels looked like a side who belonged in the hunt for the finals. They pushed the Minor Premiers and competition bench mark to the brink last week and nearly came away with the shock victory before falling to an 18-16 defeat.

The Cowboys stunned defending Premiers Cronulla Sharks in a 90-minute thriller, with an extra time Michael Morgan field goal sealing a 15-14 win. Cowboys trailed throughout the entire contest but continued to battle their way to the win with Jason Taumalolo ultimately proving the difference in the contest.

Which ever team comes out on top in this one will go onto to face the Sydney Roosters for a place in the Grand Final.

Recent Meetings

2017 – Rd 14 – North Queensland Cowboys 32 Def Parramatta Eels 6 at TIO Stadium

2017 – Rd 9 – Parramatta Eels 26 Def North Queensland Cowboys 6 at 1300SMILES Stadium

2016 – Rd 8 – North Queensland Cowboys 32 Def Parramatta Eels 16 at 1300SMILES Stadium

2016 – Rd 2 – Parramatta Eels 20 Def North Queensland Cowboys 16 at Pirtek Stadium

2015 – Rd 10 – North Queensland Cowboys 46 Def Parramatta Eels 4 at 1300SMILES Stadium

The Cowboys have won three of the past five matches between the sides in recent years. 2017 has seen both sides pick up a convincing victory apiece over each other. 

With this game coming in a must-win finals game, reading too much into the history or form of either side could well be a pointless exercise.

Selected Teams

Will Smith11Lachlan Coote
Semi Radradra22Kyle Feldt
Michael Jennings33Javid Bowen
Brad Takairangi44Kane Linnett
Kirisome Auva’a55Antonio Winterstein
Corey Norman66Te Maire Martin
Mitchell Moses77Michael Morgan
Daniel Alvaro88John Asiata
Cameron King99Jake Granville
Tim Mannah1010Scott Bolton
Manu Ma’u1111Gavin Cooper
Tepai Moeroa1212Ethan Lowe
Nathan Brown1313Jason Taumalolo
Beau Scott1414Ben Hampton
Kenny Edwards1515Coen Hess
Siosaia Vave1616Corey Jensen
Suaia Matagi1717Shaun Fensom
Kaysa Pritchard1818Ray Thompson
Peni Terepo1919Justin O’Neill
David Gower2020Braden Uele
Josh Hoffman2121Patrick Mago

The Facts Of The Matter

Parramatta Eels

Parramatta came close last week to knocking off the high flying Storm and despite coming up short will take plenty of confidence out of the match, which would’ve sent a message to the other final contenders too. The energy and enthusiasm that the Eels consistently show is a big reason why they find themselves playing finals football.

Halves Corey Norman and Mitchell Moses have been going from strength to strength since the arrival of Moses. Their kicking games are vital to the Eels’ chances while the finishing abilities of Semi Radradra make them a constant threat.

North Queensland Cowboys

The Cowboys defeated the defending Premiers last week after another barnstorming performance from human wrecking ball Taumalolo. He ran for over 250m and carried multiple Sharks defenders over the line to score the try that saw the Cowboys equal the scores.

Despite limping into the finals and missing a host of star players, including co-captains Matt Scott and Johnathan Thurston, the Cowboys keep defying the odds and showing tremendous fight to come away with wins. The Cowboys were under the pump for much of their encounter last week but their defence managed to hold strong, limiting a Sharks side to only 14 points.


Backing up from a bruising extra time encounter is going to prove a tough obstacle for the Cowboys and may be their undoing. But they have already shown their ability to overcome the odds and with Taumalolo leading the charge, they are tough to write off. Parramatta, on the other hand, will want to make the most of their second chance and qualify for the Preliminary final against the Roosters. Eels by 8.

Who will come out on top in this sudden death final, the Eels or the Cowboys? Let us know in the comments and poll below.

  1. Poll: Who will come out on top in this sudden death final, the Eels or the Cowboys?

    1. Parramatta Eels
    2. North Queensland Cowboys
    55 votes
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Tom Stratton

I'm a Tennis coach and a full on Cronulla Sharks fan. I love football and support Juventus aswell as playing on weekends. I'm crazy about sport and never shy about sharing my opinions about it.