You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content
Raiders Nick Cotric and Jarrod Croker.

Canberra are bracing for another finals-like encounter against Manly on Sunday as they aim to secure a top-four finish.

The Raiders rallied spectacularly to overcome an 18-point deficit and snatch a famous victory over ladder leaders Melbourne last Saturday, sending a resounding statement with the finals in sight.

One more win will guarantee Canberra a double shot in the play-offs, while there's a small chance of claiming the minor premiership if they triumph in the remaining three rounds and other results go their way.

The win over Melbourne was the first time in 2019 the Raiders had beaten a top-four side and the hype in the national capital has gone to another level but lock Ryan Sutton knows the gloss will rub off quickly if they let Manly get the better of them in front of the Green Machine faithful.

Match Highlights: Storm v Raiders

"We played against them at their place [a 24-20 loss in round seven] and they're a really good side. That's another team that you can't clock off against," Sutton said.

"As good as the game was at the weekend, we've still not had an 80-minute performance.

"These are the games that you want to play in to prepare yourself for the finals. It's going to be a real tough game because Manly are really in contention for the top four and we're not safe, so we've just got to take this game as another semi-final game."

Fellow forward Dunamis Lui said the Raiders had always been confident about mixing it with the best sides even though it took them 22 rounds to take down a top-four team.

"Even the week before against the Roosters, we knew we could have won that game. We were probably one or two passes away from winning that game," Lui said.

Every try from Round 22

"Hopefully we've proved to everyone we're real contenders and we're coming.

"Manly have a lot of big bodies so I reckon they'll try and challenge us down the middle. Our game plan won't change from last weekend.

"Whoever wins this game pretty much locks a top-four spot, so the more support we get at home the better for us."

Origin winger Nick Cotric was benched for the final 13 minutes against Melbourne due to his fitness but says he is now feeling 100 per cent with the finals looming.

Cotric missed three matches after a dangerous tackle on Dragon Tim Lafai in round 17 and returned with a powerful display against the Roosters in round 21 before making just 81 metres from 11 runs last weekend.

"The last few weeks has been just getting my match fitness back. Bailey [Simonsson] did a good job in the last 10 minutes too and Papa [Josh Papalii] killed it," Cotric said.

"I feel 100 per cent after a couple weeks now, I feel good."

With Joey Leilua making his return from a neck injury, Cotric has reverted to the left wing outside captain Jarrod Croker after playing six matches at right centre.

"I'm reunited with my buddy. Toots [Croker] is such a good talker out there on the field and I'm certainly comfortable back in that spot with him," Cotric said.

"Me and Toots are always talking to each other on the field and we've built a real good combination over the years.

"Joey's such a talented player and I reckon he had an outstanding game for his first game back in a while. It's good to have strike power out wide like that with him back."

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours 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.

Premier Partner

Media Partners

Major Partners

View All Partners