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2021 NRL Round 25 Preview, Raiders Vs Roosters

Josh Mercer previews the round 25 between the Canberra Raiders and the Sydney Roosters. This is what we have to look forward to.

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TEAM NEWS

Venue: BB Print Stadium, Mackay, Date: Thursday 2nd of September, Time: 7:50 pm

Canberra Raiders

1. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad
2. Harley Smith-Shields
3. Sebastian Kris
4. Matthew Timoko
5. Jordan Rapana
6. Jack Wighton
7. Matt Frawley
8. Josh Papalii
9. Josh Hodgson
10. Joseph Tapine
11. Hudson Young
12. Elliott Whitehead
13. Iosia Soliola
14. Emre Guler
15. Ryan Sutton
16. Cory Horsburgh
17. Siliva Havili
18. Sam Williams
19. Semi Valemei
20. Elijah Anderson
21. Trey Mooney

Team Changes

IN: Elijah Anderson, Iosia Soliola, Sam Williams, Semi Valemei, Trey Mooney.
OUT: Bailey Simonsson, Dunamis Lui.

Sydney Roosters

1. James Tedesco
2. Daniel Tupou
3. Josh Morris
4. Adam Keighran
5. Matt Ikuvalu
6. Drew Hutchison
7. Sam Walker
8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves
9. Sam Verrills
10. Siosiua Taukeiaho
11. Angus Crichton
12. Sitili Tupouniua
13. Isaac Liu
14. Sam Walker
15. Egan Butcher
16. Ben Marschke
17. Tuku Hau Tapuha
18. Moala Graham-Taufa
19. Brad Abbey
20. Naufahu Whyte
21. Daniel Suluka-Fifita

Team Changes

IN: Adam Keighran, Angus Crichton, Daniel Suluka-Fifita, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Josh Morris, Matt Ikuvalu.
OUT:
Ben Thomas, Fletcher Baker, Joey Manu.

Referee: Gerard Sutton

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Canberra Raiders

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Raiders helped their finals chances last week when they downed the Warrior 28-16. It didn’t start off well for the Raiders as they found themselves on the back foot early with Warriors five-eighth Sean O’Sullivan scored a try in the first minute of the game. Things got harder for the Raiders as Rocco Berry and Dallin Watene-Zelezniak scored tries for the Warriors to take a 16-0 lead. The Raiders hit back through Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad to be 10 points behind at halftime. The Second half saw the Raiders make their way back into the game with Sebastian Kris scoring a double to level the score. The Warriors attempted a field goal to break the deadlock and avoid golden point, however, Reece Walsh missed the attempt. In the final two minutes of the game, Jordan Rapana was able to score to put the Raiders ahead. Hudson Young scored off a try off a Warriors mistake as the full-time siren sounded.

Sydney Roosters

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In what was a very heated game, the Roosters not only lost 54-12 but they also lost star centre Joey Manu for the season. The Rabbitohs were the first to get on the scoreboard as Alex Johnston scored. Halfback Adam Reynolds gave the Rabbitohs an eight-nil lead with a penalty goal. The Roosters hit back with Manu scoring a try and it looked like game on. Rabbitohs front-rower and cult favourite Mark Nicholls scored his first career double to give his side the lead. Latrell Mitchell scored nine minutes from halftime to give the Rabbitohs a 24-6 lead. The Roosters were the first to score after halftime through hooker Sam Verrills to be only 12 points behind. The wheels came off the Roosters comeback however when Mitchell hit former teammate Manu in a heavy tackle, as a result, he was taken to hospital with a depressed cheek fracture. Unlike the game against the Dragons, the Roosters couldn’t muster a comeback against a quality side such as the Rabbitohs. Johnston scored another two tries, with Jaxon Paulo scoring two, and Mitchell scoring his second, giving the Rabbitohs another firey story to add into the book of feuds.

PREVIEW

Which team can Raiders fans expect to show up this weekend, the Faders or the team that runs down a lead to win the game? For the fans’ sake hopefully, it’s the latter! The Raiders did very well to fight back from 16-0 down to win the game, however, they will need to be on their game from start to finish if they are to grab eighth spot. The return of Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad has been a welcome bonus for the Green Machine and having him start at fullback is what the Raiders need in this game. Hudson Young played very strongly against the Warriors last week, another performance like that will cause the Roosters nightmares.

The good news for the Roosters this week is that they will get some key players back this weekend. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Angus Crichton and Josh Morris will be welcome returns for this game. The Roosters showed some heart last week, however, even against the Raiders heart alone will not be enough to win this game. Like against the Dragons, every Roosters player needs to be doing their job and if they do that then a win is on the cards.

KEY STAT

The Raiders (78%) have a better completion rate this season than the Roosters (75%).

PREDICTION

Roosters by two.

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