I have moved from WordPress to blogspot over the off season.
Please follow my new blog address at http://www.raidersofcanberra.blogspot.com
This is the 100 word or less preview of the Round 24 game between Raiders vs Roosters @ Canberra Stadium
The Raiders have a home night game for the first time in a while, it is cold and wet in Canberra so this should help mentally at least.
Tilse returns which adds some extra starch to the Raiders forwards.
Ball handling in wet conditions is the most important thing you can do, if we hold the ball we will win the game.
The Roosters have been ordinary to say the least since the first month of competition but have threats across the park.
If the Raiders are serious about finals they should stroll in.
Raiders by 12
This is the 100 word or less preview of the Round 23 game between the Raiders and Panthers at Penrith Park.
Usually this is the off week for the Raiders. Taking on a desperate Penrith who would want to avoid the wooden spoon.
We have only won two games in a row this year, after a good win last week will we be up for this challenge?
With the finals in sight we need to win every game to get into the Top 8.
Channel 9 reports that Dane Tilse is out for the birth of his first child with Jarrad Kennedy to come in.
This won’t be easy but we definitely have the talent.
Raiders by 4
A rather quiet week at Raiders HQ after a busy previous week.
- The Raiders and major sponsor Huawei are in talks with Manly and their major sponsor Kaspersky to hold a pre-season game in China. This could be great for the Raiders getting their brand out there. It could also help team morale and getting players here if they know every couple of years they get to travel overseas to play Rugby League at the clubs expense.
- It was confirmed on Monday that the Raiders have indeed signed Knights back rower Joel Edwards to a three-year deal. Rumours persist that Bronson Harrison will be moved on despite having two years remaining on his deal. Trevor Thurling has also been given permission to look elsewhere for first grade opportunities. The Canberra Times reported on Thursday that Thurling will most likely see out his contract. I am a big Thurling fan and I am happy he it looks like he will be staying. When given chances he runs hard and straight, something our other forwards seem reluctant to do, he is eager in defence and shows the passion for the Raiders that money can’t buy. Edwards will need to have a big off-season to be even considered for the Raiders top 17. His previous few games for the Knights have been ordinary to say the least and has been dropped to the NSW Cup this weekend.
- Raiders dummy half Travis Waddell is still looking for a club for next season. Waddell’s past month of footy for the Raiders has been terrific. He has looked a lot sharper in attack. His defence around the ruck has been top shelf as well. To add to his game he has been running the ball a lot more keeping the opposition guessing. The Raiders already have Matt McIlwrick, Glen Buttriss and Shaun Berrigan, who is close to re-signing with the club, on the books for next season. The Raiders do not need four dummy halves in their top 25 for next season which I believe is the main reason we have not signed Waddell up. His form certainly warrants it and he should find a club pretty easily if he continues with his form.
- More good news for the Raiders off the field with Local Liquor and Canberra Milk signing on for the 2013 season as shorts sponsor and goal post sponsor respectively. Despite the poor form for the last couple of season Don Furner should be commanded for the sponsors we have signed up. There is one sponsor left to announce at the top of the chest and then the 2013 jersey should be complete.
Please check back in a few hours for my Round 23 preview.
Thanks for reading
This is the 100 word or less review of the Raiders Round 22 win against the Broncos at Canberra Stadium.
The Raiders forwards were fantastic in laying the platform for our backs.
Shillington, Tilse and Mataora were all fantastic.
Shaun Fensom was the Raiders best (1 try, 179 metres, 50 tackles)
Our halves were poor in the first half luckily Dugan and Waddell really stood up and took ownership of the team.
The Broncos were flat, with Peter Wallace in particular was poor.
The Raiders took advantage of it and finally gave their home fans something to cheer about.
3 – Fensom, 2 – Dugan, 1 - Waddell
There has been actual news from Raiders HQ this week.
- Reports indicate the Raiders have signed Knights second rower on Joel Edwards on a three-year deal with $200k a season being the figure reported. Edwards has played 44 games for the Knights since 2010. While he can be a big hitter in defence he is also lazy on the inside and has gotten found out a few times. Edwards game last night against the Bulldogs was nothing short of ordinary. Falling off tackles and letting Josh Reynolds breeze past him for the simplest of tries.
- The Raiders have also signed Bulldogs second rower Jake Foster. Foster has played 10 games for the Dogs dating back to 2010. Foster has never been able to hold down a spot either due to form of injury. He hasn’t played this year under Des Hasler, obviously not in Hasler’s plans Foster has singed with the Raiders looking for an oppurtunity.
With Edwards and Foster signing on the Raiders now have an over abundance of Second Rowers. Thompson-Papalii-Fensom is our best looking back row. With the way Dave Furner uses his bench it will be made up of two front rowers (Brett White,Dane Tilse), a utility (Shaun Berrigan) and a second rower. The club now has the following second rowers under contract outside of our top three. Bronson Harrison, Joe Picker, Trevor Thurling, Mark Nicholls, Sam Mataora (can be used in the Front row also), Jarrad Kennedy and now adding in Edwards and Foster that is EIGHT players vying for the one interchange spot. Now there is always injuries so having some depth there is not a bad thing. But having eight players capable of playing first grade is excessive. It will add to the rumours of Bronson Harrison and Trevor Thurling being moved on at the end of this season.
The Raiders desperately need a number 9 who is capable of playing first grade on a week to week basis. At the moment Waddell and Buttriss have proven they can play a good game or two in a row, followed by countless ordinary performances. Matt McIlwrick looked very good in his limited time, we have him signed for a few more years. Given some time McIlwrick may be the answer. Shaun Berrigan was playing well from dummy half before his injury but has come back looking tired and in need of a rest. The Raiders went hard after Matt Ballin but missed out on him when Manly came to the table with a sizeable offer. Nathan Peats who is Issac Luke’s deputy at Souths has been having a stormer of a year and his performance against the Tigers last weekend was better than any Raiders dummy half performance this year. To move forward the Raiders need a dummy half capable of proving good service to our highly talked of forward pack. At the moment the work being done there is not up to standard. I hope instead of pursuing more second rowers we are looking to fill this void and not one where we have enough players.
Good luck to the Raiders today, as always I am hoping for a win but with our current form at home I can only hope for a better effort than last week.
Thanks for reading.
This is the 100 word or less preview of the Round 22 game between the Raiders and Broncos at Canberra Stadium.
Both teams were off their game last round and will be looking for redemption.
Broncos are close to full strength while the Raiders still have plenty of injuries with Learoyd-Lahrs being the latest casualty.
The Raiders need to hold the ball, that is the key to getting on top of the Broncos.
McCrone and Williams have to improve last tackle options, they were deplorable last week.
Broncos have a good record in Canberra, while our home form has been terrible during Furner’s entire reign.
The Raiders either win big or lose big.
Broncos by 18