2018 NRL – Canberra Raiders vs Gold Coast Titans Preview

AT A GLANCE

When? Saturday 05th May, 06:00 (UK)

Where? GIO Stadium

What channel is it on? UK - Sky Sports Arena Australia - Foxtel, LIVE PASS

Where can I stream the match? UK - Sky Sports subscribers can stream the match online via Sky Go Australia - https://www.telstra.com.au/tv-...

Are tickets still available? http://premier.ticketek.com.au...

THE STATISTICS

THE LOWDOWN

RAIDERS

Head Coach: Ricky Stuart

Starting 13: Wighton, Cotric, Croker, Leilua, Rapana, Austin, Sezer, Soliola, Havili, Paulo, Tapine, Whitehead, Papalii – Interchanges: Hingano, Boyd, Bateman, Lui – Reserves: Knight, Oldfield

Unavailable: Josh Hodgson, Charlie Gubb, Sam Williams

  • Canberra secured an important win in their quest to keep in contention for the top 8. They defeated a North Queensland side in Townsville with the Raiders doing just enough to seal an 8-18 victory.
  • Ricky Stuart has named an unchanged 17 this week as he searches for some consistency with this side.
  • Despite picking up the two points, Canberra must produce a better performance this week. They conceded nine penalties whilst making 12 errors and were fortunate that the Cowboys couldn’t take advantage of those numbers.

TITANS

Head Coach: Garth Brennan

Starting 13: Gordon, Don, Elliot, Hurrell, Sami, Cartwright, Taylor, Wallace, Rein, King, Proctor, James, Aarow – Interchanges: Stockwell, Hipgrave, Simpkins, Latu – Reserves: Fotuaika, Lee

Unavailable: Kyle Flanagan, Nathan Peats, Dale Copley, Will Matthews

  • Gold Coast were defeated for the third game in succession as they were narrowly beaten at home to Cronulla last week. The Titans looked to be sending the game to golden point when Ash Taylor kicked a 76th minute drop goal but their hearts were broken as Chad Townsend kicked his second of the game in the 78th minute to seal a 9-10 win for his side.
  • Will Matthews is out with a concussion so Max King is promoted to the run-on side at prop with Ryan James reverting to the back-row. Leilani Latu takes the vacant spot on the bench.
  • The Titans have the worst defensive record in the league at present with them conceding 207 points from their eight games, an average of 25.9 per game.

THE PREDICTION

A win here for either side will open up a two-point gap over their opponents as the battle for the finals begins to take shape. Neither side will want to fall too far behind in trying to reach the top 8 with several teams breathing down their necks. Canberra claimed a good win over North Queensland last week, getting over the line even when not playing particularly well. Gold Coast lost their third game in a row as they were beaten by a late drop goal. Both teams need to show improvement moving forward but the Raiders have to be fancied at home.