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The Canberra Raiders and Newcastle Knights meet at GIO Stadium in Round 3 NRL action. Join The Roar for live scores and commentary from 6pm (AEDT).
After promising starts to the season, these two teams will be looking to solidify their spot in the top eight after three rounds of the season.
The Raiders towelled up the Titans in Round 1 before going down to the Storm and the Knights surprised the Sharks in their opener before losing to the Panthers last weekend.
Neither side were disgraced in the losses and will both have positive energy and thoughts heading into this clash in the nation’s capital.
Ricky Stuart was quite pleased with his sides structures and patterns in the loss to the Storm and cited the benchmark standard set by Melbourne as a good early test for his Raiders.
Newcastle were within centimetres of toppling the Panthers in what turned out to be a hard-fought two-point loss.
The Knights will be hoping for a continuation of the obvious development and adjustment that the team is undertaking.
Nathan Brown is determined to persist with Kalyn Ponga in the halves and Connor Watson has lived up to his part of the bargain with a promising start to the season at full-back, although at the time of writing he was in doubt for this match.
The Knights’ young forwards will be tested against the big Raiders pack tonight.
Josh Papalli and Sia Soliola will provide the usual challenge and Englishmen Elliott Whitehead and John Bateman present a more skilful arm in the Raiders’ forwards.
Tim Glasby and David Klemmer will need to lead from the front for the visitors if they are to escape Canberra with the two competition points.
This match may well come down to a forward battle in the centre of the park with a no-nonsense approach taken by both coaches.
The corresponding fixture last season was quite different with plenty of points and an open affair.
I’m tipping that both coaches will look to grind their way to victory in this one. Canberra have the forwards to get that job done.
Canberra Raiders 18, Newcastle Knights 14
Catch all the action on The Roar live coverage from 6pm (AEDT).
Where: GIO Stadium, Canberra
When: Friday 29th March, 2019 (AEDT)
TV: Fox League, NRL App, Kayo Sports
1 Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad 2 Nick Cotric 3 Jarrod Croker 4 Joseph Leilua 5 Jordan Rapana 6 Jack Wighton 7 Aidan Sezer 8 Josh Papalii 9 Josh Hodgson 10 Dunamis Lui 11 John Bateman 12 Elliott Whitehead 13 Ryan Sutton Interchange: 14 Siliva Havili 15 Hudson Young 16 Sia Soliola 17 Corey Horsburgh
Reserves: 18 Sam Williams 19 JJ Collins 20 Bailey Simonsson 21 Jack Murchie
1 Connor Watson 2 Edrick Lee 3 Hymel Hunt 4 Jesse Ramien 5 Shaun Kenny-Dowall 6 Kalyn Ponga 7 Mitchell Pearce 8 David Klemmer 9 Danny Levi 10 James Gavet 11 Siona Mata’utia 12 Lachlan Fitzgibbon 13 Tim Glasby Interchange: 14 Kurt Mann 15 Aidan Guerra 16 Mitchell Barnett 17 Herman Ese’ese
Reserves: 18 Josh King 19 Mason Lino 20 Jamie Buhrer 21 Brodie Jones