Parramatta stars washed away their grand final disappointment with a cruise on Sydney Harbor as part of their traditional Mad Monday celebrations.
The Eels’ hopes of ending a 36-year premiership drought ended at Accor Stadium on Sunday when they lost 28-12 to Penrith, with the Panthers becoming only the second team in the NRL era to win back-to-back premierships.
While the Panthers celebrated with their fans on Monday, celebrations were understandably more subdued in the Eels camp.
Nathan Brown (left) and Mitch Rein were seen smoking outside the Rose and Crown
The players met at the Rose and Crown hotel in Parramatta before leaving the venue by car as the celebrations continued on Sydney Harbor aboard the Aussie Magic.
A large contingent of players turned up, including star halfback Mitchell Moses, five-eighth Dylan Brown and captain Clint Gutherson.
Gun props Junior Paulo and Reagan Campell-Gillard were also in attendance.
Nathan Brown and Mitch Rein were seen smoking outside the Rose and Crown, while other players treated themselves to a drink while on board.
Eels stars began their Mad Monday celebrations at the Rose and Crown Hotel in Parramatta
Eels star halfback Mitchell Moses (left) and Brown (right) were in attendance
New South Wales prop Junior Paulo was also among the players taking part in the celebrations
Players left the Rose and Crown to go on a cruise around Sydney Harbour
The players left the hotel as the celebrations moved on from Parramatta after a while
A Parra player, meanwhile, appeared to be smoking an e-cigarette.
Earlier this season, former Gold Coast captain Kevin Proctor was sacked after posting a video on social media of himself fuming inside CommBank Stadium during the Titans’ loss to Canterbury.
Parramatta’s end of season celebrations looked considerably more subdued than some of the infamous Mad Monday parties NRL and AFL teams have attended in the past.
Players were then seen walking off the boat in the night as the party ended, before waiting to get into cabs while waving goodbye.
A large contingent of Parra players took part in the Mad Monday festivities
After leaving the Rose and Crown in Parramatta, the players moved to Sydney Harbour
Reagan Campbell-Gillard (left) prepares to board the Aussie Magic
The Parramatta stars boarded the Aussie Magic where the festivities continued
The relatively tame nature of the celebrations should come as no surprise after the Eels failed to end a premiership drought that has now entered its 37th season.
In their first Grand Final appearance since 2009 and only their third since they last won the competition in 1986, Parramatta were never in the running against a superb Penrith side.
Parramatta trailed 28-0 with four minutes remaining before tries to Clint Gutherson and Jack Arthur made the goal line more respectable.
The Eels will lose some key players during the offseason, with star second rower Isaiah Papali’i heading to the Wests Tigers and hooker Reed Mahoney joining Canterbury.
Five-eighth Dylan Brown (left) enjoys a drink while on board with his teammates
The players shared a drink while on board, but the celebrations were subdued
Eels stars were reeling from their Grand Final loss to Penrith on Sunday night
Marata Niukore leaves for the Warriors, while Oregon Kaufusi and Ray Stone join Cronulla and Dolphins respectively.
Despite the disappointment, however, the Eels stars felt there was plenty to be proud of after a roller-coaster season.
“It’s been a roller coaster ride this year for us,” Gutherson told Nine after the game.
Eels players eventually disembarked at night as their cruise ended
The atmosphere looked jovial but far from boisterous or boisterous as the players waited around
Some players chatted while waiting for their cabs after the cruise ended
Eels stars are seen boarding a taxi as their mad Monday came to an end
‘It’s everyone’s goal to get here. Unfortunately we couldn’t get the result we wanted.’
Speaking to AAP, Paulo echoed the sentiment: ‘Part of me feels proud of the year, proud to get here because a lot of people wrote us off.
‘A lot of people doubted that we would even make it to the final […]
‘The other part of me says it’s disappointing to get an opportunity like that and not take advantage of it. It’s quite difficult’.