The Parramatta Eels look set to be without big-minute prop Junior Paulo for at least a fortnight after the front-rower was charged for a last minute tackle against Penrith.

The grand final rematch certainly delivered on Thursday night, including everything from tries on debut, a double sin-bin, failed HIAs, golden point and one hell of a two-point field goal.

However the major talking point post-match was Junior Paulo's 80th minute tackle on Zac Hosking, the prop jumping from the ground before catching the young back-rower across the face.

The prop was sin-binned and handed the Panthers a kick for touch, with Nathan Cleary nailing a 46-metre field-goal to send the match into overtime, before a recently re-signed Mitchell Moses handed the Eels their maiden win of 2023.

Paulo has been slapped with a Grade 2 careless high tackle, which will see the behemoth miss just two matches for the incident, or risk extending it to three if he fights the charge at the judiciary and loses.

It's a monster blow for Parramatta, who face the Sydney Roosters fresh off a bye next Thursday night.

Paulo wasn't the only charge stemming from the match, with team-mate Make Sivo also charged for dangerous contact on Hosking, however the grade one charge will only cost Sivo $3,000 with an early guilty plea, or risk two games in front of the tribunal.

After the Ryan Matterson incident, it's almost certain he'll accept the monetary penalty.

Lastly, Mitch Kenny was charged after being sin-binned in golden point, catching Waqa Blake high, and earning a grade one careless high tackle charge.

A plea will see the hooker fork out $1,800, or push it to $2,500 if he fails to beat the charge.

The trio have until Saturday afternoon to make the call on whether they accept the pleas, or fight their respective charges at the judiciary on Tuesday night.


  1. Based upon what Hughes got, he should be gone for minimum 6 weeks just putting it out there. Interesting with 16 minutes to go kicker gets tackled doesn’t see it coming driven to ground hits head gets up rubbing shoulder for next 5 minutes of play so obviously did sting = penalty given but no report?

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