The Raiders will be heading up to Queensland for the second time this year to face the North Queensland Cowboys at 1300 Smiles Stadium on Saturday night.

Canberra will be hoping for the same result as last time in the Sunshine state where they kept the Gold Coast Titans scoreless in round one.

They are also coming off a great 17-10 win against the Newcastle Knights where the Raiders held 56% of the possession and also led the way with 1,756 run metres.

The Cowboys will be looking for some redemption this week after losing 42-16 to the Cronulla Sharks in a game where the Sharks packed on five tries in 20 minutes of the second half.

The Green Machine have made minor changes to the lineup this week as Joe Tapine has been named in the extended squad and will be assessed before the team departs on Saturday.

Sam Williams will be coming in again this week to replace Aidan Sezer at halfback who is ruled out for at least one more match with an oblique injury.

Last Time

The Raiders defeated the Cowboys 38-12 in the second appearance of 2018 at GIO Stadium. Canberra led the game with a 14-12 lead at halftime with Jordan Rapana scoring a double in the win.

Key Matchups

Jordan Rapana vs Nene Macdonald

Jordan Rapana will play his 100th NRL match this week in Townsville and will face Queensland native Nene Macdonald.

Rapana will play his 95th game for Canberra after arriving in 2014 where previously scoring five tries in five games in 2008 for the Gold Coast Titans. The 2017 Dally M Winger of the Year has scored 62 tries for the Green Machine.

Macdonald has scored one try this season and will be looking for more this weekend. 

Elliott Whitehead vs Coen Hess

Two second-rowers will face each other as English International Elliott Whitehead will go up against Queensland representative Coen Hess.

Whitehead joined Canberra in 2016 while scoring 21 tries in 77 appearances and since the move to the Nations Capital has won the Coaches’ Award in 2017, the ability to play multiple positions makes him a threat to any opposition.

Hess is playing his fifth season for the Cowboys and provides a rare combination of speed, size and strength.

Sam Williams vs Michael Morgan

Two halfbacks will battle up in Queensland as Sam Williams will face the skipper for the Cowboys, Michael Morgan.

Williams will look to continue on from his impressive game last week when he had 214 kicking metres with one forced drop out whilst also bagging a try in the Raiders win. Veteran Morgan will once again lead the Cowboys with his strong kicking game with two forced drop outs last week against the Sharks.

We spend a lot of time together as a playing group working with different combinations, so we just need to be confident

Sam Williams

Head to Head:

The Raiders and the Cowboys will face each other for the 42nd time with Canberra winning 23 times over North Queensland.