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The Canberra Raiders will look to prove themselves as genuine title contenders when they take on the Sydney Roosters at Suncorp Stadium. Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match, starting at 2pm (AEST).
While the Raiders faithful may be sick of it, the only way they can silence their doubters is by stepping up in the next fortnight.
In two week’s time they have the high-flying Rabbitohs. This week, however, they have the defending premiers – the Roosters.
Trent Robinson’s men have been faultless outside of their opening round loss to Souths. And the scary thing is that during their seven-game winning streak, they haven’t always been at their best.
The early-season wins are incredibly important though given that the Roosters are likely to be heavily represented during the Origin period.
After a comfortable 42-12 victory over the Tigers last week, the challenge will be to turn up with the same intensity against the competition’s biggest improvers – Canberra.
The Raiders were impressive against Penrith as they defended a mountain of sets on their own line, paving the way for a 30-12 win.
It came at a cost though with John Bateman suffering a fractured eye socket. The competitive Englishman is replaced in the starting side by Hudson Young.
They are boosted by the return of Jordan Rapana on the wing, offsetting the continued absence of Joey Leilua (neck).
Canberra will need to be just as determined in defence on Sunday though, as the Roosters are a far more ruthless side in attack than Penrith.
The Roosters are due for a loss but you just can’t tip against them the way they are going.
Sydney by 8.
Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match, starting at 2pm (AEST).
Kick-off: 2pm (AEDT)
Venue: Suncorp Stadium
TV: Live, Fox League
Online: Foxtel Go, Foxtel Now
Betting: Roosters $1.35, Raiders $3.25
Referee: Gerard Sutton, Peter Gough
1. James Tedesco 2. Daniel Tupou 3. Latrell Mitchell 4. Joseph Manu 5. Matt Ikuvalu 6. Luke Keary 7. Cooper Cronk 8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9. Victor Radley 10. Siosiua Taukeiaho 11. Boyd Cordner 12. Angus Crichton 13. Isaac Liu 14. Nat Butcher 15. Zane Tetevano 16. Sitili Tupouniua 17. Mitchell Aubusson 18. Lindsay Collins 21. Sam Verrills
1. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad 2. Nick Cotric 3. Jarrod Croker 4. Michael Oldfield 5. Jordan Rapana 6. Jack Wighton 7. Sam Williams 8. Josh Papalii 9. Josh Hodgson 10. Dunamis Lui 11. Hudson Young 12. Elliot Whitehead 13. Ryan Sutton 14. Siliva Havili 15. Bailey Simonsson 16. Iosia Soliola 17. Corey Horsburgh 18. Aidan Sezer 19. Emre Guler