NRL Round Seven Roundup: Eels hold on to top rung
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 27: Clinton Gutherson of the Eels celebrates kicking the winning field goal in golden point time during the round seven NRL match between the Parramatta Eels and the Canberra Raiders at Bankwest Stadium on June 27, 2020 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

 It was another exciting round of fixtures in the NRL last week, as the Parramatta Eels edged the Canberra Raiders to remain top of the table.

And victories from both Penrith Panthers and Sydney Roosters kept the top of the ladder looking tight, with the full roundup of all of the fixtures during round seven below:

  • Panthers remain hot on the heels of the Eels

Penrith Panthers 20 South Sydney Rabbitohs 12

The clash between Penrith Panthers and South Sydney Rabbitohs opened round seven, with the Panthers hoping they could stay in the running at the top of the ladder. 

Two first-half tries for the Panthers gave them an 8-0 lead at half-time, Brent Naden striking early followed by a Stephen Crichton try just before 30 minutes.

South Sydney responded better in the second forty with two tries of their own, Bayley Sironen and Alex Johnston sliding over for the Rabbitohs. 

But Johnston's late try was a mere consolation, as Nathan Cleary had already secured the two points for Penrith minutes before.

  • Melbourne Storm thunder past Warriors

Melbourne Storm 50 New Zealand Warriors 6

Melbourne Storm's response to their round six defeat to the Panthers came in the form of a 50-6 thrashing against New Zealand Warriors.

A trio of tries from Suliasi Vunivalu, along with braces from Paul Momirovski and Ryan Papenhuyzen, helped put the Storm up to 4th place in the table. 

After Stephen Kearney was sacked as the Warriors' coach off the back of last round's heavy defeat to the Rabbitohs, interim coach Todd Payten will likely want to forget his first game in charge, as the Warriors slump to 14th. 

  • Morris trio gifts Roosters victory over St. George

Sydney Roosters 26 St. George Illawara Dragons 12

After giving the Eels their first taste of defeat this year, the Sydney Roosters continued their winning ways with victory over St. George Illawara Dragons.

St. George, who were missing soon-to-be St. Helens player James Graham, also came into Friday's contest off the back of a victory in the previous round, but were no match for the Roosters. 

Brett Morris helped Sydney climb to third in the NRL ladder, with St. George now only two points off bottom.

  • North Queensland Cowboys take two points from the Knights

North Queensland Cowboys 32 Newcastle Knights 20

The North Queensland Cowboys recorded an impressive victory over the Newcastle Knights in round seven. 

The Knights were hoping that they too could close the gap on the Eels with a victory at the 1300SMILES Stadium, but the Cowboys spoiled their plans with four first-half tries to give Newcastle a difficult task in the second forty.

And although the Knights did attempt a comeback, they did not have enough to shift the game into their favour, and fall down to 5th with the Cowboys remaining in 10th.

  • Broncos slump to another defeat

Brisbane Broncos 12 Gold Coast Titans 30

 Gold Coast Titans came out victors in Saturday's Queensland Derby clash with Brisbane Broncos. 

Saturday's defeat for the Broncos makes it five on the bounce, having lost every game in the NRL since the restart.

The Titans went into half-time with a 22-0 lead in front of 6262 fans at Suncorp Stadium, whilst the Broncos were booed off the pitch. 

The 18 point margin was the Titans' biggest over the Broncos in their history, with Matt Lodge also hobbling off 15 minutes from time to make matters worse for Brisbane. 

  • Gutherson's first ever field goal clinches victory for the Eels

Parramatta Eels 25 Canberra Raiders 24

A field goal from Eels skipper Clinton Gutherson gifted his side a massive two points at home to Canberra Raiders.

The Raiders coach Ricky Stuart made no changes to the side that lost to Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles the week before, as defeat at Bankwest Stadium means Stuart continues the hunt for his 200th NRL victory. 

Sitting at the top of the ladder with just a one point lead over the Panthers, the Eels will host the Cowboys in round eight, whilst the Raiders will welcome St. George in the hope they can find their winning ways again.

  • Sea Eagles struggle to handle Sharks attack

Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 22 Cronulla Sharks 40

The absence of star players Dylan Walker and Tom Trbojevic was felt by the Sea Eagles, as the Cronulla Sharks capitalised on a lacklustre Manly defence.

The Sharks picked up only their third victory in 12 years against Manly, grounding the ball seven times in yesterday's contest at Central Coast Stadium.

Sunday's result sees Manly drop to 8th in the standings, whilst the Sharks remain in 11th but are now two points off Wests Tigers in 6th.

  • Bulldogs sit bottom

Canterbury Bulldogs 6 Wests Tigers 32

Tommy Talau scored a brace of tries for Wests Tigers against Canterbury Bulldogs in the final game of round seven, sinking his former side to the bottom of the ladder. 

Yesterday's game at a rainy Bankwest Stadium was the Tigers' 500th match since their formation in 2000, and was also Tigers coach Michael Maguire's 100th NRL victory. 

Despite the result, it was actually the Bulldogs who struck first, Reimis Smith going over inside 20 minutes. But from then on it was the Tigers' game for the taking, who now sit in 6th in the ladder whilst the Bulldogs find themselves bottom after losing six of the first seven opening rounds this season.