Contentious Peachey try helps Panthers upset Eagles, Storm earn week off
A contentious late try from Tyrone Peachey helped Penrith Panthers upset Manly Sea Eagles in an NRL Finals eliminator, while Cameron Smith made a record appearance as Melbourne Storm earned a week off with a hard-fought win over Parramatta Eels.
The Panthers were blown away 28-12 by a Sea Eagles side that charged into the Finals last week but it was the visitors celebrating at Allianz Stadium on this occasion thanks to a 22-10 triumph.
There was an element of controversy about the win, though, as the TMO decided there was insufficient evidence to suggest Peachey had knocked on in the 73rd minute with the scores locked at 10-10, despite the ball possibly hitting his hand.
Bryce Cartwright then dotted down for his second of the match in the final minute as the Panthers booked a semi-final with Brisbane Broncos.
Manly trailed 10-4 at the break as Cartwright's score and six points from Nathan Cleary's boot cancelled out Dylan Walker's try.
Lewis Brown's converted score levelled up a tight encounter, but Manly's hopes were ended when the late Bunker call went against them.
Smith made a record-breaking 356th NRL appearance as minor premiers Storm held off a gutsy Eels side to earn an 18-16 victory and a week off.
Parramatta had won nine of their past 10 matches - including a victory over the Storm - ahead of the contest at AAMI Park and threatened another upset having led 10-4 at the break.
Josh Addo-Carr's early try for the hosts was cancelled out by Kirisome Auva'a and Will Smith scored for an Eels side making a first post-season appearance since 2009.
But the Storm came roaring back with a blistering 10 minutes after the break in which Kenny Bromwich and Billy Slater crossed for converted tries, and Smith added another penalty to stretch the lead to eight.
The Eels refused to wilt, though, and Semi Radradra ran one in under the posts with less than 15 minutes remaining.
They were unable to find another score but have a second chance to progress against either Cronulla Sharks or North Queensland Cowboys in the semi-finals, while Storm have a break before their preliminary finals.