A group of rugby league players celebrate scoring a try

‘We tried to see who had the bigger you-know-what’: How Panthers loss got Parramatta back on track

Parramatta took Canberra to the cleaners last week and progressed to their first preliminary final since 2009 by doing all the things they do well.

The Eels played with tremendous width, offloaded whenever they could and used their size, strength and athleticism all over the park to run the Raiders ragged in Friday’s 40-4 victory.

It begs the question, why didn’t they do the same just seven days before in a heavy loss to Penrith – a defeat which condemned them to walk a harder path to the grand final as they travel to North Queensland to play the Cowboys on Friday.

For prop Reagan Campbell-Gillard, the answer is simple.

“If you look back at that Panthers game – if you’ll excuse the French — we tried to see who had the bigger you-know-what. We tried to out-muscle them, and didn’t play to our strengths,” Campbell-Gillard said.

“We played into Penrith’s hands, they’re a quality side in terms of their defence and wrestle. If you go one-out, that’s what they want.

“We changed it around, it was a pretty easy fix, and we did that really well.

“It was still a bit patchy in defence sometimes, but leaving a quality side like Canberra with four points? We’re happy with that.”

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