Raiders collect Canterbury scalp in the cold

In conditions which can only be found in the Nation's Capital for Friday Night Football, the Canberra Raiders have pulled off a shock win over the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs defeating them 20-12 tonight.

The freezing conditions at Canberra Stadium favoured the NRL "Cellar Dwellers" although errors showed early for both sides, but the Raiders after 10 minutes started to fire in the opposing force of Mother nature.

The Raiders took the lead early, on the back of some scrappy defence from the Bulldogs, taking advantage of their first attacking set inside the Bulldogs half. Ben Barba was attempting to cover the holes in the line, however he was unsuccessful as the Raiders, spreading the ball wide, endied with a dummy pass from Joel Thompson to find a massive hole, again beating Barba to crash over the line. Opening the account first the Raiders led 4 points to nil with Jarrod Croker missing the goal attempt.

After scoring the try, the Raiders blew the error count to 5-1 with Dane Tilse one of the serial offenders. However in the 25th minute, after more continued pressure from the Bulldogs, it was all undone with another 4-pointer to the Green Machine's Reece Robinson. He took the intercept pass from Andrew Ryan to streak away down field.

By halftime the Raiders had been stuck in their own half for most of the half, however they led on the score board by 10 points. The Bulldogs hadn't been terrible in all this action, having been piling pressure on the Raiders in their half. Looking at the stats at the break, you wouldn't expect Canberra to be leading with only one tackle in the Bulldogs 20 metre line, compared to the 31 times in which the Bulldogs have been tackled in the Raiders 20 metre zone.

Although from this all, Josh Dugan had been missing with State of Origin duties and his replacement hasn't left a hole. Nathan Massey was living up to the standards set by Dugan and running strong into the Dogs line, handling the pressure well although making a single handling error in the first half.

Canberra started the second half much like they played in the opening minutes. And making his mark with a 40/20 attempt was halfback Sam Williams, going down to the Southern corner of the field, however Ben Barba hit the ball back into the field of play. In tow was Reece Robinson running down to collect it. The Bulldogs defence out of position after the long range kick, but in the next play, Joe Picker capitalised on that lacking defence to collect his 4-pointer. From this, the Raiders extended their lead to 16 points to nil.

Come the 60th minute the Bulldogs were still failing to find the tryline. The Raiders collected two extra points with a penalty coming on the back of Bulldog Frank Pritchard having a second effort on Raider Josh Papalii in the ruck. The referee had every right to give the penalty, and with the goal attempt successful, the Raiders continued to run away 18-0.

Making up for his penalty, Frank Pritchard took on the Raiders line on the back of a changeover on the 30 metre line in the 64th minute. Before he was put to ground, he popped the ball inside to Josh Morris for him to step into a hole to find the whitewash to score. The Bulldogs taking three-quarters of the match to score, trailed the Raiders 18-6.

The Raiders were looking to seal it with a field goal attempt in the 68th minute. Any closer to the try line and he would of scored - however Josh McCrone only 8 metres from the line, attempted the field goal but missed.

In his 10th try of the year, Ben Barba put the foot down to run around 3 Raiders defenders on the back of great led up work from his team mates. Simple work from him saw the 'Dogs starting to fight back 18-12, although at this late stage it seemed too little, too late.

Minutes later the Video Referee was brought in for the Raiders, trying to seal the win, but they were denied the points by an obstruction call. Tempers flared a set later when Bulldogs hooker Josh Reynolds smashed Raiders half Sam Williams from behind. Penalty to the Raiders, and they will collect not only the 2 points from the goal, but the 2 of the win.

A second consecutive win sees the Raiders finding their feet at home, to collect their third win of the 2011 NRL season. The Bulldogs had their chances in the opening minutes with 31 tackles made in the Raiders 20 metres zone. Trent Hodkinson needs to work on the last tackle options, but the struggled tonight with Michael Ennis, even those haters need to realise they miss him in the number 9.

Match Details

Canberra Raiders 20 defeated Canterbury Bulldogs 12
National Rugby League - Round 11 - Friday May 20, 2011 7:30pm
Venue: Canberra Stadium
Referee: Shayne Hayne and Chris James
Video Referee: Tim Mander
Touch Judges: Paul Holland and Luke Potter
Crowd: 12,865
Halftime: Canberra Raiders 10 Canterbury Bulldogs 0

Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:
3 Points - Shaun Fensom
2 Points - Nathan Massey
1 Point - Blake Ferguson

Canberra Raiders (20)
Tries: Joe Picker, Reece Robinson, Joel Thompson
Field Goals: Josh McCrone (0/1)
Conversions: Jarrod Croker (2/3)
Penalty Goals: Jarrod Croker (2/2)

Canterbury Bulldogs (12)
Tries: Ben Barba, Josh Morris
Conversions: Steve Turner (2/2)

LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary Team Changes for tonight's game. Firstly for the Canberra Raiders, Danny Galea is out with Joe Picker to start in jersey 18. Whilst for Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs, Sam Kasiano to bench, Greg Eastwood to start in jersey 14.
Just a note, if you are talking on twitter about this game, use the OFFICIAL hashtag #NRLcancan.
We are about 30 minutes away from First Grade kicking off with a start at about 7:45PM. Meanwhile in Toyota Cup, Under 20's, the Raiders have been defeated by the Bulldogs 38 points to 10.
Some news for Canberra Raiders fans, 5/8th Terry Campese has confirmed that he will return for the Green Machine in Round 13 Vs North Queensland Cowboys.
We are about to get underway at a very cold Canberra Stadium. The Bulldogs running out first at a very loud booing song from the Raiders fans.
Shayne Hayne gets us underway, the Bulldogs kick off down to the Raiders.
1 min: Good first set from the Raiders, making it to halfway. On the 4th tackle the Raiders send the kick down to the corner with Barba to run it from his own line.
3 min: Good early play from both sides. It has been end to end football for the opening minutes.
3 min: Jamal Idris using his strength to force the error on the Raiders fullback Messey. Scrum feed to Raiders only 20 metres from the line.
4 min: From the scrum base, the Bulldogs when to the blind side with Barba. He made a quick break looking for the line. However wrapped up only 7 metres from the line.
5 min: End of the set for the Bulldogs, the last tackle option not the best with the kick going backwards and bounces awkwardly for the Dogs, Raiders end up with the ball.
6 min: Bulldogs have had most of the early ball. Keating trying the short chip kick over the Raiders line. However it was collected mind-air by Furgerson and managing too stay in the field of play.
8 min: Jamal Idris is firing up after missing his NSW Blues spot. Dane Tilse finding out what a shoulder from a disappointed Blue feels like. Knock on Raiders, scrum dogs.
8 min: Recee Robinson doing well under pressure with a kick from Trent Hodkinson defused on the full by the Raiders winger. 20 metre tap for the Green Machine.
10 min: TRY
TRY! - On the back of some scrappy defence from the Bulldogs, the Raiders taking advantage of their set attacking set inside the Bulldogs half. Ben Barba attempting to cover the holes in the line, however unsuccessful as spreading the ball wide. Ending with a dummy from Thompson to find a massive hole again beating Barba to crashing over the line.
Canberra Raiders 4-0
13 min: Tilse with his second error of the night inside 15 minutes. Terrible handling from him. Bulldogs attacking inside the 30 metre line of the Raiders.
14 min: Nathan Messey has handled the pressure, taking the kick from Hodkinson in the dead ball line. Raiders goal line defence has been good early. Goal line drop out for the Dogs giving them another repeat set.
15 min: Referee Ruled a forward pass from Keating. Scrum feed giving to the Raiders 10 metres from their line.
16 min: Knock on ruled against the fullback Massey. He was rolling out of a tackle and losing the ball in Dane Tilse style. Another scrum feed to the Bulldogs inside the Raiders 40 metres.
17 min: Bulldogs not getting to their kick on the last play. Kris Keating slammed on his back, in which gave the ball easily to the Raiders.
19 min: Bulldogs are controlling this game so far on the back of handling errors from the Raiders. Possible issue with Brett White, as he comes from the field. The Raiders may of scored first, however they haven't been the best side.
20 min: Lovely take from Croker on the full from the Bulldogs kick. but wait, Ben Barba has stolen the ball back from the Raiders.
21 min: The Handling errors continue and they, the Raiders giving the ball back.
21 min: First Penalty to the Bulldogs for a strip. They take the tap only metres from the Raiders line. Here is their chance.
22 min: Error count up to 5-1 against the Raiders. Another scrum feed inside the 10 metres of the Raiders for the Bulldogs. They need to score in this set.
22 min: VIDEO REFEREE DECISION. POSSIBLE TRY TO Josh Reynolds
22 min: NO TRY! Josh Reynolds has been penalised for obstruction. The call against the Bulldogs, as Reynolds dived from dummy half into his team mate. That is only the 2nd penalty tonight.
24 min: Raiders' McCrone on the last getting a wobbly kick away after being hit by Bulldog Aiden Tolman. Bulldogs work it through Idris.
25 min: TRY
TRY! After more continuing pressure from the Bulldogs, it is all undone with another 4-pointer to the Green Machine. Reece Robinson took the intercept pass from Andrew Ryan.
Canberra Raiders 10-0
27 min: After the try, Raiders play out a simple set and get to their kick which was collected by Ben Barba.
28 min: 4th Tackle and the Bulldogs with Keating getting a nice offload to Idris who went for a Gallop and taking on the Raiders line.
29 min: Another penalty for the Bulldogs. with Josh McCrone being offside.
30 min: 2nd Penalty to the Raiders. As Brett White is running on the sideline in the hope he will be back on the field tonight.
31 min: Knock on ruled against Harrison. Raiders need to control themselves. But the Bulldogs escape the attack with a scrum feed on their 40 metre line.
33 min: Nathan Massey in control under pressure. Bulldogs in another attacking set, haven't really chanced their hands. Jamal Idris starting to get very fiery as he just keeps hitting hard.
34 min: Trent Hodkinson's kicking game hasn't been the best tonight, the ball had too much on it. Raiders escape another attacking set from the Dogs with a 20 metre tap.
36 min: Bulldogs are getting stuck in their own half in the past 5 minutes. Trent Hodkinson's kick again not the best hitting a Raider on the way down to the outside backs to end up with Massey.
38 min: In the last 10 minutes the Bulldogs have been slipping away in attack. The Raiders finding their feet. Wraps on Nathan Massey who hasn't turned away from the hard hitting action.
39 min: Coming into half time and the Raiders last tackle option taken to waste time it seems. A slow and tiring Bulldogs pack slowly get to the 20 metre tap.
39 min: In an action which have summed up the Bulldogs final 10 minutes in the first half. Hodkinson has knock on, but the siren sounds before a scrum can pack down. HALF TIME.
HALF TIME from a freezing Canberra Stadium and the home side has been all but fiery. The Raiders been stuck in their own half for most of the half, however they lead on the score board by 10 points. The Bulldogs haven't been terrible in all this action, they have been piling pressure on the Raiders in their half. Looking at the stats at the break and the Raiders you wouldn't expect to be leading with only one tackle in the Bulldogs 20 metre line, that is compared to the 31 times in which the Bulldogs have been tackled in the Raiders 20 metre zone. Continuing the bad news for the Bulldogs, the possession swing is with them 57% of the ball compared to the Raiders 43%. From those stats you wouldn't believe the Raiders lead by 10 points.

If the bulldogs want to take this game from the Green Machine, they need to find another way to attack the Raiders line instead of just going to Trent Hodkinson for a kick on the last tackle. 31 times they have been tackled in the 20 metre zone of the Raiders and no points. The Dogs need to overcome the conditions and come out firing for the second 40 minutes.

Although from this all, Josh Dugan has been missing with State of Origin duties and his replacement hasn't left a hole. Nathan Massey has living up to the standards set by Dugan and running strong into the Dogs line and handling the pressure well although making the single handling error in the first half.

The Raiders have this at the moment, but who scores first will win here in the Nation's Capital.
40 min: Shayne Hayne gets us underway in the second half. Raiders needs to start strong to win this.
40 min: Good opening set from the Bulldogs, getting the kick away on the last down to Blake Ferguson in which he collected the ball on his own 10 metre line.
42 min: Zero tackle for the Raiders inside the Bulldogs 30 metre line. This is their first chance to extend their lead in the 2nd half.
42 min: Jarrod Croker going for a run sideways on the back of more sideways running from Massey, lacking control in that set only metres from the Bulldogs line.
43 min: Kris Keating getting a little confused at the end of that set, he tried 3 times to get the kick away, but spinning around into open space to kick the ball down field for the Dogs.
44 min: Aiden Tolman has come off for the Bulldogs limping.
44 min: Steve Turner saving the try for the bulldogs. The high kick was allowed to bounce 10 metres from the Bulldogs line. Turner got a hand to it, forcing the Goal line drop out for a repeat set for the Raiders.
45 min: Josh Reynolds forcing the error on the much better Brett White, scrum feed to the Bulldogs after being under pressure inside the Raiders 30 metre line.
47 min: TRY
TRY! - WOW! 40/20 Attempt from Sam Williams going down to the Southern corner of the field, however Ben Barba hit the ball back into the field of play. Reece Robinson running down to collect it. the Bulldogs defence out of position after the long range kick, but in the next play, Picker capitalises on that lacking defence to collect his 4-pointer.
Canberra Raiders 16-0
51 min: David Stagg running strong on the back of the kick, the ball was collected by Nathan Massey and at the same time Massey was hit hard by a Stagg shoulder.
53 min: The kicking game of the Bulldogs not the best again, Raiders running the ball from their line again with Nathan Massey.
54 min: Knock on against the Raiders. The Bulldogs escaping there, with Blake Ferguson trying to catch the ball however the ball "fingered" by him. End of the set change over.
55 min: Great work from Ben Barba to force the repeat set for the Bulldogs. Barba had TWO jumps at the ball but failing to come close to it both times. However the Bulldogs have another good chance in the 2nd half to score.
57 min: Another repeat set for the Bulldogs. Trent Hodkinson getting the short grubber in the in goal area. The ball hit into touch by Reece Robinson for a forced goal line drop out.
58 min: Forward pass ruled out of dummy half from the Bulldogs. Silly error from the dogs. Aiden Tolman has ice on the knee, he won't be back tonight.
59 min: Penalty to the Raiders for a second effort on the ruck from Frank Pritchard.
59 min: PENALTY GOAL
The Raiders deciding to take the 2 extra points. The penalty coming on the back of Bulldog Pritchard having a second effort on Raider Josh Papalii in the ruck. Referee had every right to give the penalty away.
Canberra Raiders 18-0
61 min: Well, that wasn't the right call from the referee. Andrew Ryan clearing stripping in a two man tackle from the Raiders player. But Knock on ruled. Scrum feed to the Bulldogs.
61 min: Penalty to the Bulldogs on the back of the scrum for the Raiders breaking the scrum before the ball was called "out:"
62 min: Josh McCrone saving the day for the Raiders. Again Trent Hodkinson's kick game isn't the best with a grubber heading toward the post was collected on the bounce by McCrone. Raiders escape that.
63 min: Raiders not the best option on the last tackle. The kick from McCrone deemed out on the full, Bulldogs have the change over on the Raiders 30 metre line.
64 min: TRY
TRY! - Frank Pritchard taking on the Raiders line on the back of the change over on the 30 metre line. Before he was put to ground, he poped the ball out to his inside to Morris for him to step into a hole to find the whitewash to score.
Canberra Raiders 18-6
66 min: Another terrible kick from Trent Hodkinson again for the Bulldogs. Raiders work it from their own 30 metre line.
67 min: For the second time tonight the Bulldogs have allowed the ball to bounce on the back of a high bomb of the Raiders. Ben Barba eventually collected the ball, however in his attempt to exit the in goal area, he was wrapped out for a goal line drop out.
68 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT
Any closer to the try line and he would of scored. However McCrone only 8 metres from the line, he attempted to kick the field goal, but missed.
Canberra Raiders 18-6
69 min: TRY
TRY! - In his 10th try of the year for Ben Barba. He put the foot down to run around 3 Raiders defenders on the back of great led up work from his team mates. Simple work from him, to run 30 metres to score.
Canberra Raiders 18-12
71 min: Josh Reynolds, chancing his hand for the Bulldogs with a small chip over the Raiders line. However not able to collect the ball on the bounce. Raiders come away with the ball. They will attempt the field goal in this set.
72 min: WOW! Zero tackle RAIDERS!. Knock on ruled against the Bulldogs. The set restarted after Blake Ferguson jumped and leaped in the air over the corner post.
73 min: VIDEO REFEREE DECISION FOR THE RAIDERS.
73 min: VIDEO REFEREE DECISION FOR THE RAIDERS.
73 min: NO TRY! Obstruction ruled for the Raiders, the try was not disallowed for a knock on, however there was a call against them for a play into the Raiders teammate.
73 min: Bulldogs starting to fire now. Some good running from all involved. Josh Morris getting the pack moving, he got the ball on the inside pass ball to Goodwin.
74 min: The pass pushed too much from the Dogs, Pritchard knocking on the ball on the last for the Dogs. Raiders pack the scrum.
75 min: Bulldogs are stuck in their 10 metre zone, 2 tackles inside that area. they need to put the foot down and work in this set to hold the Raiders in their own half.
76 min: Under pressure the Bulldogs Kasiano has been ruled to have knock on. Raiders get the ball back with a scrum feed.
77 min: TIME OFF! The passion is boiling under the pressure. The Bulldogs Reynolds smashed the Raider Sam Williams from beyond in a typical Sam Thaiday hit. Penalty to the Raiders, and they will collect not only the 2 points from the goal, but the 2 of the win.
78 min: PENALTY GOAL
From the penalty against the Bulldogs for a cheap shot. Croker gets the 2 points from the goal
Canberra Raiders 20-12
79 min: Bulldogs not out of his yet. From the restart the Dogs getting the ball back, with a play at the Raiders line.
79 min: Raiders look to collect it here. 20 metre tap on the back of a quick attacking set from the Bulldogs. The siren awaits as the Raiders fans jump in the stands.
80 min: FULL TIME!. The green Machine, the Raiders have won in the Nation's capital in freezing Conditions. Good news for the Raiders fans collecting another win over the Dogs for their 3 win in the 2011 NRL Season.

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