JOSH HODGSON THE HERO
English International hooker Josh Hodgson made the biggest play in their win over Sydney Roosters with a 40/20 kick three minutes from time that led to Sam Williams slotting over the winning field goal.
With a shoulder injury to Lachlan Croker just before the break, Hodgson was forced into the halves alongside Williams. Another excellent game making over thirty tackles and influencing the final result.
Hodgson fast developing as one of the best rakes in the NRL competition.
FINALLY CAN THE RAIDERS WIN AT HOME?
Since Ricky Stuart took over at the Raiders helm in 2014 his side has only won seven home games from twenty-five attempts. Such a poor home ground record.
For only the second time since returning to the club has Stuart coached the Raiders to back to back wins at GIO Stadium. The last time being over the Tigers and Eels at the back end of 2014.
Down 6-16 at half time things looked grim for the Green Machine until Hodgson and Josh Papalii inspired their team to victory.
The Raiders could make history on Saturday March 26 with victory when they host Gold Coast Titans.
Could this be the start of a big winning streak at GIO such like their dominance under David Furner in 2012 and 2013?
JOSEPH LEILUA SIN BIN CONTROVERSY
A pivotal part of the game came fifteen minutes from the end with the Raiders trailing 20-14. Joseph Leilua carted up the ball and appeared to get the better of Roosters defender Dylan Napa. Napa catching Leilua high on the way down which led to the Raider punching his opponent.
Under the current rules, any punch is an automatic sin-bin so technically Leilua was punished correctly. Leilua is known to lack discipline from time to time.
Ask any Raiders fan and they will tell you it was soft. So, what did our Twitter followers think?
POLL: Should Joseph Leilua been sin binned for punching Dylan Napa? #NRLRaidersRoosters
— NothingButRL (@NothingButRL) March 12, 2016
ROOSTERS IMPROVE BUT MORE NEEDED
Last week they were caned by cross city rivals South Sydney Rabbitohs. This week they led comfortably and looked headed for victory when Jayden Nikorima sliced through the defence to score to put them ahead 20-14.
With long term injuries to Jared Waerea-Hargreaves and Boyd Cordner, along with Mitchell Pearce stood down until round 9, the Roosters have to face the reality of sticking with pretty much the same squad that lost in Canberra.
Jackson Hastings and Nikorima are still developing as football players and their combination will improve with each game they play. In the meantime more senior players like Aidan Guerra, Jake Friend, Blake Ferguson and SKD need to have more influence on the game. Today we only saw this in patches.
The three-times in a row National Rugby League minor premiers right now are searching deep to get their first win on the board. It gets no easier against the defending premiers North Queensland Cowboys in Townsville on Thursday night.
IN THE SHEDS
Dylan Napa is on report for the Roosters after a high tackle on Jordan Rapana. He may also be in trouble for his 65th minute tackle on Leilua.
Leilua himself was placed on report for a dangerous tackle in the first half.
Shaun Fensom played one minute of the match before being ruled out of the game after failing a concussion test. Lachlan Croker left the field just before half-time with a shoulder problem, adding further to the Raiders woes in the halves.
Canberra Raiders 21
Tries: Josh Papalii 2, Iosia Soliola, Jarrod Croker
Goals: Jarrod Croker 2
Field Goals: Sam Williams
Sydney Roosters 20
Tries: Latrell Mitchell, Blake Ferguson, Aidan Guerra, Jayden Nikorima
Goals: Latrell Mitchell 2
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