The Raiders Are The Real Deal Baby!

Remember a couple of months ago when I wrote off the Canberra Raiders because they were just too inconsistent? Basically I said, I like them, but they can’t win the title because they can’t string performances together. When they do however, look out!

The Raiders last night become the first NRL clubs to win six games in a row this season by beating the Penrith Panthers 24-22.

I said this would be the closest game of the round, and it didn’t disappoint. These two teams traded tries all night!

Canberra looked to have the edge all game though in two areas.

Their long kicking game for field position was fantastic all night. Terry Campese just controlled this entire game and it helped the raiders dominate field position.

The other area the Raiders dominated was the mental side of the game. These were two teams that have not played in the finals for years, and it showed. However the Raiders just showed that touch of composure the panthers just didn’t seem to have.

I was not impressed with the Panthers attack in this game at all. Its been a problem all season and I put it squarely on the coach. Its almost as though the attack is aimless, there are no goals and no plans.

Any sweeping backline play is killed off when, the ball gets to the outside backs, and they simply run back in field and into the teeth of the defense. Its like their plays are not worked to attack a weakness of pinpoint a defensive problem in the opposition side.

You can’t take away from the Raiders through, they played great, and Terry Campese, he was incredible in this game.

I thought the referee’s were terrible though! In a game with two big forward packs, they allowed so must crap to go on in tackles, it was very frustrating.

I also was surprised as the smallish crowd too. Once again, I maintain the Panthers management has damaged the supporters base. Panthers fans have no faith in the club, they love the players, but there are issues with the club itself and until they are fixed, the fans will stay away.

Last but not least, I want to leave you with a statistic.

In NRL finals games, Matthew Elliott’s coaching record is now 0 wins and 6 losses.

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