Panthers ready to pounce against Eels
MORE pain is on the cards for Parramatta fans against the Panthers tonight.
Parramatta coach Brad Arthur has returned Chris Sandow to halfback after an ordinary performance at fullback with Luke Kelly relegated to the NSW Cup and Will Hopoate backing up from a torrid State of Origin loss 48 hours earlier.
It's a massive ask for Parramatta against the Panthers, who are fresh and topped up by quality players returning to the line-up.
The Eels are mentally shot, losing 14-12 last weekend to defending premiers South Sydney coming off a gut-wrenching golden point loss to the Warriors the week before.
They are missing forwards David Gower (ankle) and the aggressive Darcy Lussick (suspended) and also have Peni Terepo (pectoral), gone for the season and Richie Fa'aoso, whose season is also in limbo.
With Wallace back in the No.7 and Mansour chewing up the metres out of dummy half, the Panthers just look too strong across the park.
So much depends on how Sandow plays and sometimes even he doesn't know the answer until he is on the field which is why frustrated coach Brad Arthur can't wait for Kieran Foran to arrive next season.
The battle of the little men, hookers James Segeyaro (Penrith) and Nathan Peats, will have a big bearing on this clash.