Corey Norman produced an inspirational performance as the beleaguered Parramatta Eels overcame the loss of two players to injury, including star winger Semi Radradra, to come from behind and secure a stunning 22-18 victory over the Sydney Roosters.
The Eels have endured a host of setbacks in 2016, most notably a 12-point deduction for salary-cap breaches, the continued unavailability of half-back Kieran Foran and controversy surrounding winger Radradra, who pleaded not guilty to three assault charges earlier this week.
On Friday, coach Brad Arthur confirmed Foran - already ruled out for the season through injury - would be taking further time away from the game, and Parramatta went on to suffer further misery in the first half at Pirtek Stadium as they lost Radradra to a suspected medial ligament injury and hooker Isaac De Gois to concussion.
When the Roosters moved 18-6 up early in the second period, Daniel Tupou laying on a try for Boyd Cordner before also setting up Latrell Mitchell's second, things looked bleaker still for the Eels.
Semi Radradra won't return tonight. He'll undergo scans tomorrow for a possible medial ligament injury #blueandgold
-- Parramatta Eels (@TheParraEels) July 8, 2016
Yet Norman was at the heart of an admirable fightback, the 25-year-old following up his first-half assist for Michael Gordon by creating three further tries and then making a last-ditch tackle to prevent a late Roosters score.
Manu Ma'u benefited from two Norman assists, while Clinton Gutherson became the third Parramatta player to touch down a grubber kick from the number six as the Eels moved ahead for the first time with five minutes remaining.
It was Norman who then denied Joseph Manu the chance to pull the Roosters level, the youngster bundled into touch as he dived over in the right corner.