The Penrith Panthers have beaten the Parramatta Eels 28-12 in the 2022 NRL Grand Final on Sunday, 2 October.
The Panthers were just too strong for the Eels, who despite defending well, couldn’t stop the Penrith attack from scoring.
Parramatta Eels coach Brad Arthur was disappointed with the result but proud of his boys for their performance.
“They’re a very good team, they played very well in the first half,” Arthur said.
“They played too fast for us, and we were beaten by a better team. We are disappointed but I told the boys that now is not the time to dissect that.”
“I am extremely proud of the team, the staff, and the club. It was a long road to get here and maybe that took a toll on us but it’s a big achievement.”
Arthur, who was not one to point the finger, didn’t look for any excuses to use, knowing that Penrith outplayed his team despite their hard efforts.
“At the end of the day, once they turn up today, we have 80 minutes to play of a lifetime,” Arthur said.
“We can’t be looking for excuses, we were just beaten by a better team.”
Eels Captain Clint Gutherson backed his coach, saying it was frustrating to give such a good team the ball all the time.
“Brad said it, they are a quality team,” Gutherson said.
“When you give them that much ball, it felt like they were kicking where ever they wanted. They’re a great team and they made us pay tonight.”
“I am just super proud to lead the boys to this game, and in footy, someone has to lose and tonight, that was us.”
Although it ended in disappointment, the Eels should be proud to lead their club their first grand final chance since 2009.
Despite the Eels’ best efforts, Penrith were just too good, with Nathan Cleary leading the attack.
The Panthers have gone back-to-back and defended their last title win against the South Sydney Rabbitohs.
Penrith join a group of elite clubs to defend their grand final wins, the last to do so were the Sydney Roosters in 2018 and 2019.
Coach Ivan Cleary was extremely happy with his team’s performance, saying that he is blessed to be their coach.
“I am so proud of the boys and excited for the team,” Cleary said.
“It is quite emotional, and it’s good to enjoy this moment. The boys were unbelievable tonight.
“We have done so well for so long, and anyone can win the big game, so I was just happy that tonight went well for us.
“I am lucky and blessed to be their coach.”