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NRL match preview: Canberra Raiders vs Canterbury Bulldogs

Date: Friday June 20th
Venue: GIO Stadium
Kick-off: 7:45pm

Teams

Raiders: Anthony Milford, Matthew Allwood, Jarrod Croker, Jack Wighton, Sami Sauiluma, Terry Campese, Josh McCrone, David Shillington, Glen Buttriss, Brett White, Jake Foster, Jarrad Kennedy, Shaun Fensom, Interchange: Mitch Cornish, Kyle O’Donnell, Dane Tilse, Shannon Boyd

Bulldogs: Mitch Brown, Corey Thompson, Krisnan Inu, Timoteo Lafai, Drury Low, Josh Reynolds, Trent Hodkinson, Sam Kasiano, Michael Ennis, James Graham, Josh Jackson, Tony Williams, Greg Eastwood. Interchange: Dale Finucane, Tim Browne, Pat O’Hanlon, Reni Maitua, Lloyd Perrett

Preview

In the aftermath of a historic New South Wales victory, Canberra Raiders play hosts to Canterbury Bulldogs for Round 15’s first clash of the weekend on Friday night.

Both sides are out of form and will be looking at this game as a springboard to climbing up the NRL ladder with a disappointing Raiders languishing in 14th and the Bulldogs in a more respectable 6th however considering how they lead the competition for a number of weeks they will be less than impressed.

The Raiders will look to the fact that they have a week’s extra rest under their belts due to their bye last weekend and although the Bulldogs have lost three in a row, two of those defeats were without their Origin stars.

In the last games the teams played in the NRL, Canberra lost to Brisbane Broncos 28-4 in a tame showing and the Bulldogs fell victim to Origin as they were defeated 22-12 by the Eels without Hodkinson and Reynolds.

The form of the Raiders so far this season is worrying and with the top eight falling out of reach week after week their season could be in tatters if they don’t turn it around soon.

As for the Bulldogs they have the chance to go back into the top two and put the pressure on the other sides around them to perform and regain their spot later in the weekend.

In team news the home side are without Reece Robinson, Josh Papalii and Paul Vaughan with the trio being replaced by Matthew Allwood, Jake Foster and Kyle O’Donnell. The Dogs welcome back Origin heroes Reynolds and Hodkinson who back-up from a brutal Origin II with Drury Low and Lloyd Perrett also coming into the side. They are without David Klemmer, Damien Cook and Sam Perrett.

Prediction

The Raiders have been poor for the majority of the season and the Bulldogs should be too strong for the home side. Bulldogs by 12

My name is Sean Hayes. I am from Widnes, England. I am currently studying journalism at Salford University. Aspiring sports journalist and rugby league fanatic whether it is watching, playing or writing about the greatest game! Follow me on twitter @SHayesNBL

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