Panthers go back to back
The Penrith Panthers have produced a stunning performance over local Western rivals Paramatta Eels to claim the 2022 NRL premiership, winning the Grand Final 28-12 at Accor Stadium in Sydney on Sunday night.
The Panthers dominated the clash from the outset, running in the first five tries to lead 28-0 before late tries to Eels captain Clint Gutherson and Jacob Arthur added some respectability to a one-sided decider.
The result means Penrith become the first team since the Sydney Roosters in 2018-19 to win back-to-back premierships, the club's fourth in its history.
The Panthers won the SG Ball, Jersey Flegg, NSW Cup and State Championship finals, with Sunday’s first grade title completing the perfect season.
First half tries to Stephen Crichton, Brian To'o and Scott Sorensen were the result of a clinical Penrith outfit led by half back Nathan Cleary, the Eels unable to gain any field position or make the most of their possession chains, trailing 18-0 at the break.
To'o ran in his second try five minutes after half time, and when Charlie Staines added another in the 58th minute the game was as good as over, Paramatta unable to match it with their highly fancied opponents.
Panthers fullback Dylan Edwards put in a stunning display to win the Clive Churchill Medal as best afield, his tackle to put Bailey Siminsson in to touch one of the highlights of the game.
The back-to-back premiership triumph stamps the Ivan Cleary coached Penrith as one of the greatest teams of the modern era, set to attack a three-peat in 2023.
IMAGE: South Coast Register.