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The Canberra Raiders returned to Raiders HQ on Monday for initial testing ahead of their 2016 pre-season campaign, with the clubs physical performance department impressed with the results of the rigorous testing completed in the first two days.

Raiders Head of Physical performance Nigel Ashley-Jones said expectations had been set high for the players this year, but they’ve exceeded these expectations to deliver the best results the club has seen in his tenure.

“Each year we’ve returned for pre-season training we’ve noticed a small improvement in the players physical condition as they return from their break, but this year we’ve been blown away by the results of the players on their return,” Ashley-Jones said. “From the second they walked into Raiders HQ on Monday morning they were focussed on the tasks we have given them and the results speak volumes for the amount of effort they’ve put in to making sure they’ve been diligent in their time away from the club.”

Players were given strict targets to hit in terms of body composition, fitness levels and strength targets with results showing the playing group looks committed and focussed on a pre-season to best prepare them for a strong 2016 season.

Ashley-Jones said he’s extremely impressed by the way in which the playing group has responded to the challenge and said he has noticed a continuation of the positive values installed into the players over the past two seasons.

“The competiveness and attitude of the players is exactly what we’ve wanted to kick things off for what will be a gruelling pre-season campaign,” he said. “The best part of this is the way in which the players have responded to our targets and the way in which they have shown they want to work hard to achieve the goals we set.

“Contrary to some media reports I saw today we don’t make excuses at this club and I’ve never heard Ricky Stuart make any. We definitely won’t be starting to now.”

“Our physical performance team is excited about the first few weeks of the pre-season and we’re looking to continue the good work the players have started.  We know by looking at the results they will be determined and ready for what we challenge them with over the next few months.”

The Raiders full squad will now return for the commencement of pre-season training on Monday November 9. 

Acknowledgement of Country

Canberra Raiders respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.