Fiji Bati winger Isaac Lumelume scored a try on debut for the Parramatta Eels but it was not enough as they went down 22-16 to the NRL champions, the Penrith Panthers on Saturday.
The Panthers led 18-4 at halftime with three tries from Luke Sommerton, Tom Jenkins and Jesse McLean while Kurt Falls converted successfully.
Zac Cini scored the only try for the Eels which Sean Russell failed to convert in the 26th minute.
After numerous struggles, a deft kick by halfback Jake Arthur forced a line dropout and the Eels cashed in with a try to Lumelume, who showed good speed to cross wide out. Russell’s conversion merged the score at 18-10.
The Panthers scored their last try in the match through Logan Cohen which Falls failed to convert before Cini scored a consolation try for the Eels and Russell converted for 16 points.