NRL: NZ Warriors recruit Marata Niukore stars as Parramatta Eels thrash Canberra Raiders to clinch preliminary final spot

The Parramatta Eels have clinched their spot in the NRL preliminary finals after thrashing the Canberra Raiders at CommBank Stadium on Friday.

Four tries in the opening 25 minutes set up a 40-4 victory, with the Raiders unable to back up last week's shock win over the Melbourne Storm.

Niukore scores a try.
Niukore scores a try. Photo credit: Getty Images

NZ Warriors recruit for next season Marata Niukore scored twice, with Parramatta running in seven tries to their opponent's one.

Kiwis five-eighth Dylan Brown racked up over 200 metres, with Canberra's defence unable to withstand the barrage of attacks.

Mitchell Moses, Tom Opacic, Waqa Blake and Junior Paulo also all touched down, as the Eels surged to their first grand qualifier for the first time since 2009.

Parramatta coach Brad Arthur was delighted with the result, which sets up a showdown with the North Queensland Cowboys next week.

"It's good, I was proud of the boys and I'm happy for the club but the jobs are not finished, we've got a big week ahead of us and I'm looking forward to it," he said

"I thought we went out there tonight and backed ourselves. We went after it whereas maybe against Penrith we were a bit tentative and didn't play to our strengths. 

"We've just got to go after the game and see what happens."