Second Home Game
The Raiders will be looking to bounce back after last week’s loss against the Melbourne Storm in their second home game of the season at GIO Stadium.
Josh Papalii will be looking to continue his fine form against the Knights after an impressive outing last week against the Storm.
Papalii missed zero out of the 28 tackles he made, along with 14 hit-ups, and will be hoping his forward pack can continue their dominate performances despite the loss of Joe Tapine to a thumb injury.
Battle of the Five-Eighths
It’ll be a battle in the middle of the park between the new five-eighths as Jack Wighton comes up against Kalyn Ponga.
Both playmakers have made the switch from fullback, with Wighton being a key player for the Raiders at the start of their 2019 campaign.
Wighton might have the upper hand in this bout, having played five-eighth in previous club matches whilst Ponga is relatively new to the position and will be playing off teammate Mitchell Pearce for guidance.
The two will have huge roles for their respective clubs and will be hoping each of their performances can help guide their team to victory.
Junior Participation Round
This Friday night will see the Raiders celebrate Junior Participation Round, as clubs from all across the Canberra region will come together at GIO Stadium to participate in a range of events.
Junior players from various age-groups will have the opportunity at half-time to compete in the Canberra Region Rugby League relay, an event that allows players of different abilities to showcase their speed and see who is the fastest in front of thousands of Raiders fans.
During half-time of the Jersey Flegg curtain raiser, young boys and girls will also have the chance to play a match on the field at GIO Stadium, letting them fill the boots of their Green Machine idols.
Winger Jordan Rapana will be hoping to get off the board for the 2019 season and continue his try scoring record against the Knights this Friday night.
Rapana has managed to bag four tries in his past two matches against Newcastle, including a hat-trick back in Round 25 in 2017, when the Raiders defeated the Knights 46-28.
Yet Rapana will have to go through former teammate and current Newcastle winger Edrick Lee, as both players will be looking to impress in front of the Raiders faithful when they clash head-to-head at GIO Stadium.
A very energetic Raiders crowd helped fire up the Green Machine last Friday night, with over 14,000 fans making their way to GIO Stadium to cheer on the home side.
Raiders Forward and English International Ryan Sutton loved the vibe the crowd was giving off in his home debut and said running out to the Viking Clap was ‘special’.
Sutton will be hoping to replace the injured Joe Tapine in the starting 13, however is happy with the game time he is getting early on in the season.
The Raiders will be looking for another massive home crowd to help cheer and encourage them along during their clash with the Knights.