Eels didn't handle NRL title talk: Arthur

Rufina Vignone
Agosto 12, 2017

"The ball never touched the ground", the referee told Eels five-eighth Corey Norman.

Sio completed his brace with an acrobatic try in the 67th minute before Brock Lamb capped off an outstanding display with a field goal to snap the Eels' six- game winning streak.

"Obviously we didn't handle (the hype) really well because we can only go by the results and our actions and our actions weren't great", Arthur said.

Arthur conceded his team were beaten in all the effort areas by the Knights, and suggested his side were also brought undone by complacency.

"It's not great, but we've got to move past it", Arthur said of the loss.

Matt Gillett set them on their way by bursting through for the opener and Darius Boyd added another before Luke Lewis' converted try just before the break reduced the deficit to 14-6, Anthony Milford having converted twice and slotted over a penalty.

Knights coach Nathan Brown believed the Eels' forward pack held the key to whether they can contend for a title this season.

"If we go in there you'll get penalised for a flop".

"I think the tackle was complete", Arthur said. "At the end of the day, we were good enough to get the ball and score again whereas if going where they want to get to, they want to be preventing those bad calls".

The Knights shot out of the blocks with two tries in the opening 10 minutes.

The Eels momentarily stemmed the flow with their own long-range try through Michael Jennings who produced a 55m run in the 18th minute.

The decision came five minutes after Eels fullback Will Smith was sin-binned for a professional foul despite appearing to have tackled the dummy-half from an onside position.

Newcastle second-rower Lachlan Fitzgibbon then took a short ball from Lamb to stretch their two-point halftime lead to eight.

Parramatta's chances of a NRL top-four finish have suffered a setback after a controversial 29-10 defeat to an improving Newcastle at ANZ Stadium.

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