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Raiders book semi-finals spot with fifth straight win in Melbourne

The Canberra Raiders defeated the Melbourne Storm 28-20 at AAMI Park on Saturday night, in the first elimination final of the 2022 finals.

The Raiders will now advance to the semi-finals where they will take on the Parramatta Eels next week, with a spot in a grand final qualifier on the line.

It was an amazing performance for the Raiders who took advantage of every chance they had, despite spending most of the match defending their line.

It was another amazing performance from Tapine who played a season-long 67 minutes, assisted a try and ran for 216 metres.

Unfortunately for the Raiders, it was a fast start for the Storm who forced an error on the away side's goal line in the second minute.

The Storm dominated possession in the following exchanges but the Raiders defence proved too good, despite the home side's excellent field position.

It was then the Raiders who took advantage of their first chance of the match in the following set after an offload from Tapine found Wighton, before Timoko opened the scoring in the seventh minute.

It was a great finish from Timoko who managed to beat Munster in a one-on-one battle close to the try-line to score the opening try of the match, after a great run and try assist from Wighton.

Fogarty's conversion attempt from the right sideline was unsuccessful, as the Raiders took a four-point lead early in the first half.

Both sides threw plenty at one another in attack but both defences refused to break in the following ten minutes.

The Storm scored their first try of the match in the 17th minute after earning more attacking territory through set restarts and forced dropouts.

It was a great finish from Coates in the right corner despite a great defensive effort from Kris, Meaney also missed his first conversion attempt of the afternoon, tying the game up at four all.

It wouldn't take long for the Storm to go back to back as they continued to dominate possession. After some second-phase play, Hughes found Coates once again in the right corner who crossed over for his second in the 21st minute.

Meaney’s second conversion attempt from the right corner was also unsuccessful but the home side took a four-point lead to go ahead.

The Raiders would then tie the match up once again in the 31st minute after Fogarty took the Storm off a scrum and ran over three defenders.

Fogarty converted his own try and give the lead back to the Raiders who led 10-8 heading into the final exchanges of the first half.

Momentum was firmly with the green machine following the try and would find themselves with another chance on the Storm's line after the home side gave away an obstruction penalty.

The Raiders made the Storm pay for the error after Tapine put Whitehead through a hole who crashed under the posts in the 35th minute.

Fogarty converted his second try of the match to extend the Raiders lead by 8 points with four minutes remaining in the first.

The green machine had a chance to score one final try before the break but couldn't capitalise, limiting the Raiders to a 16-8 lead at halftime.

The Storm would strike first in the second half after taking advantage of an overlap on their right side, it was a great run from Seve who found Munster who assisted Coates for a hattrick in the 44th minute.

Munster converted from in front to limit the deficit to two points.

Like the first half, the Storm dominated the possession in the opening half which would earn them a penalty in the 30th minute. The Storm chose to attempt a penalty goal which was unsuccessful and following an error would give the ball back to the green machine.

The Storm would have to wait until the 56th minute to capitalise on their dominance and it was Asofa-Solomona who crashed over after an assist from Grant.

Munster converted the try outside the right post and put the Storm up by four points.

After some physical defence from both sides, it took until the 64th minute for the Raiders to earn a result through a goal line drop out.

The Raiders levelled the game just moments later after a Wighton grubber found Young for his first try of the match in the 65th minute.

Fogarty converted the try to put the Raiders back in front 22-20.

Both sides tried their best to crack open the defence but once again, points proved hard to come by.

It wouldn't be until a Storm error that invited the Raiders into more great field position.

Rapana pounced on a loose ball in the in-goal in the 73rd minute and Fogarty nailed the conversion from the sideline to put Canberra up by eight.

The Storm proceeded to throw everything at the Raiders defence but the green machine held strong as Wighton bulldozed Kaufusi into touch with two minutes remaining.

The Storm would get the ball back with 90 seconds remaining in the match but Whitehead stole the ball on the final play to book the Raiders a spot in the semi-finals.

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.