Veteran Raiders prop Brett White takes a hit-up during his side's romping win over the Rabbitohs on Sunday. Copyright: Robb Cox/NRL Photos

Merritt no-try ruling lifted Canberra spirits

Raiders forward Brett White says a decision not to award a try to Rabbitohs winger Nathan Merritt during South Sydney's second half fightback gave his side a much-needed lift.

With the Rabbitohs well and truly on the way to erasing a 22-0 half-time deficit with two second-half tries, the video referee reversed the decision to award Merritt a four-pointer after noticing prop Sam Burgess had toed the ball back from an offside position, in front of dummy half John Sutton when he grubbered the ball into Raiders prop Dave Shillington.

"Yeah it did [give us a lift], little things like that, it helped us out with the momentum of the game," White told NRL.com after his team's 30-18 win.

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"Everyone talks about momentum and that was probably a crucial part for us. We were lucky we were able to go and score at the other end after that."

Had Merritt scored his 145th NRL try, he would have passed the legendary Benny Wearing as the Rabbitohs' greatest try-scorer.

Asked about South Sydney gaining the ascendency in the second half, White said it had been addressed at half-time.

"We knew they'd come out a different team and they certainly did. We were able to weather that storm and hang in there and keep doing our job and got the reward for it," he said, adding, "And a few of our hookers were missing tackles!" as bench hooker Josh McCrone wandered within earshot in the sheds post-match.

Overall White said it was a great Canberra performance, especially given back-rowers Shaun Fensom and Joel Edwards were lost to injury during the game.

"The boys hung in there really well in the second half. We've been close the last few weeks, we've been disappointed with a couple of games, today we probably got the reward for the hard work we've been putting in," he said.

"The boys were really committed to where we wanted to go and what we wanted to do this year, today we definitely got that reward."

White agreed with his coach that losing Fensom to injury had been a huge blow.

"We saw that last week when we were without him, he's one of those blokes that does all that gritty work. Such a big thing you know, what he does for the team – they're big boots to fill even though they're only little ones he wears!"