CANBERRA RAIDERS V NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
SATURDAY JUNE 6, 11.40AM, HUNTER STADIUM
The Canberra Raiders will head into this Saturday’s match against the Newcastle Knights with a fresh injection of confidence which has been derived from a hard fought 48-40 victory over the top of table Brisbane Broncos at GIO Stadium.
The Brisbane Broncos had only been defeated twice this season and Canberra managed to show their never say die attitude against arguably the best side in the competition.
In what was a high scoring affair, Canberra managed to score three early tries which got them on the front foot, although through poor defensive errors then allowed Brisbane back into the contest.
The Raiders did not give up throughout the second half despite surrendering the lead to the Broncos. After a high shot on Lachlan Lewis provided an easy penalty conversion to give the Raiders a 42-40 lead, the game was then wrapped up after Lewis picked up his own grubber kick to score on the stroke of full-time to end the game 48-40.
With the side scheduled to receive a bye the following week, a win against the 12th placed Newcastle Knights this Saturday will be a major priority for the young Holden Cup side.
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A player who has been highly impressive over the last couple of weeks has been Morgan Boyle. After working his way into the starting front-row, Boyle played a heavy part in the Raiders win over the Broncos and will be looking to again help get Canberra the much needed win before the week off.
Boyle is the son of David Boyle who played in 117 games for the Green Machine from 1991-97.
Boyle junior said that whilst the side has enjoyed last week’s win, the focus is firmly placed on the tough game up in Newcastle considering they suffered a loss during the pre-season to the Knights.
“No one is getting too far ahead of themselves, we’ve just been working hard at training and now we’re just waiting for the Knights game to see what we can do against them,” Boyle said.
“They gave us a bit of a touch up in the in the trials, so I’m expecting they’ll be coming out the same way. We just have to beat them physically in the middle and give them nothing.
“Obviously we want to head into the bye week in good form like we did last time against the Rabbitohs. Mick [Coach Mick Mantelli] just doesn’t want us to leave anything out on the paddock in the game because we have a good rest coming up.”
In his first full season in the Holden Cup, Boyle is hoping to improve on the defensive side of his game.
“I’m mainly trying to progress with my defence, I’m a pretty tall and lanky guy so I need to be able to move my feet faster and get more agile.”
A win this weekend could prove vital towards the side’s endeavours in the top eight and potentially top four.
A win will secure their place in the top eight heading into the all-important bye week which will position them well for the remainder of the season.
Make sure to catch the game live on Fox Sports at 11:40am this Saturday.