The Tigers should be fresh and hungry to play after last week's bye and they need to get back on track after some near misses lately.
Coach Michael Maguire has named a strong side, especially since Moses Mybe has come through Origin unscathed.
The Raiders snapped a three-game losing slide with last week's hard-fought win over the Bulldogs.
John Bateman made a welcome return and Ricky Stuart will be crossing his fingers his Origin reps are fit to back up.
Wests Tigers: The club's sole Origin player Moses Mbye only had eight minutes off the Maroons bench and has retained his No.1 jersey against the Raiders. Still, coach Michael Maguire reshuffled his back five at the 24-hour mark, dropping right winger Robert Jennings and right centre Paul Momirovski. David Nofoaluma and Mahe Fonua were brought off the extended bench into the starting back-line. Momirovski was cut an hour before kick-off, while Chris Lawrence returns from a long injury layoff and has been promoted from the reserves to the bench. Chris McQueen was a late omission, replaced in the starting lineup by Michael Chee Kam. Elijah Taylor was cut on Thursday.
Raiders: Sam Williams is out, replaced at halfback by Aidan Sezer, while props Dunamis Lui and Josh Papali'i have dropped to the bench, with Ryan Sutton and Iosia Soliola the new starting props. Origin duo Jack Wighton and Nick Cotric will both play. Michael Oldfield was cut with Williams an hour prior to kick-off. Royce Hunt and Sebastian Kris were trimmed from the reserves on Thursday.
Luke Brooks will be aiming for a big game, knowing that the Tigers have to start racking up some wins. He has an interesting battle on his hands against Raiders halfback Sam Williams, who has made the position his own since being elevated to first grade a few weeks into the season.
For the Tigers to win
Getting away to a positive start is imperative, and that means the forwards have to play with plenty of power and aggression to lay a solid platform. If they can get out to an early lead it might generate some impatience and poor execution among the Raiders. Their main playmakers Brooks, Benji Marshall and Robbie Farah have to lead the way.
For the Raiders to win
The Raiders made up for a disappointing home loss to the Cowboys in round 11 with last week's road win over the Dogs. They were without several of their stars and Ricky Stuart was pleased to see his team back to relying on defence as their best weapon. They'll have to be even more alert defensively against the likes of Marshall, Farah and Brooks if they're going to notch their eighth win.
Brett Kimmorley says
John Bateman has been the buy of the season. I’m hearing from staff and players in Canberra that when he returned to training last week it was a huge boost due to the aura he has. Ricky Stuart is doing a great job with Canberra. The Wests Tigers do struggle with scoring points. The Tigers will challenge them but I don’t know if they can score enough points. Raiders by 6
It might not be long before Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad is regularly mentioned in the same breath as the Tedescos, Tuivasa-Shecks and Pongas if he keeps up his current form. Canberra's fullback is first in the NRL in runs (223), first in kick return metres (763) and second in run metres (2,097).
And another thing ...
The Tigers and Raiders split their two meetings in 2018. The Green Machine crushed the Tigers 48-12 in their first clash at Campbelltown in June before the Tigers got some payback with a 22-20 triumph two months later in Canberra. The Tigers have won five of 11 games this season, while the Raiders are fifth on the NRL ladder with a 7-5 record.