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Far from taking the 13th placed Warriors lightly this weekend, Josh Hodgson says the Raiders are on high alert for a dangerous opponent hell-bent on finishing a disappointing season on a high.

Despite securing a top-four finish, GIO Stadium has been far from a fortress for the Raiders this season with just five wins from 10 games.

However, four of those losses were by a converted try or less and Hodgson is confident the side chosen this weekend can get the job done, even without Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad, Jordan Rapana, John Bateman and Iosia Soliola.

"It's still a really important game for us to finish off on a high and up the ladder as far as we can," Hodgson said.

"The Warriors can’t make the eight but I'm sure they want to finish their season with a win and we've been in their position the last couple of years and when you're in that last game you've got the mentality you want to give everything, so it's going to be a very physical and tense game."

Outside of injury-enforced changes coach Ricky Stuart isn't expected to make changes for week one of the finals in the backline, with Rapana and Nicoll-Klokstad to come back in.

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However, Hudson Young, Emre Guler and Corey Horsburgh can continue to push for a bigger role in the post-season when they take on the Warriors.

"I think this year's probably been the best we've had in terms of depth, but we probably didn't expect that until we saw how well the younger boys went in pre-season," Hodgson said.

"Once we saw how they went when we gave them a crack, it was a no-brainer to keep playing them."

Hodgson denied the changes Stuart has made for this weekend will affect continuity heading into the finals, saying in fact the Canberra coach wanted to spell even more topliners.

"Our processes stay the same no matter who's in the squad or who's got their number on the back," Hodgson said.

"Everybody should know their job and the game plan doesn't change, it's more about knowing your role."

Joe Tapine (ribs) was named on the extended bench and is an outside chance of playing but one man who will certainly be there is Jarrod Croker.

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"I thought about it [resting], but I feel alright and I hate missing footy when I'm injured let alone when I'm not so I'm keen to go again," Croker said.

"I think it's more a chance to rest those niggles and mentally freshen up as well. It has been a big month and guys like Charnze who'd only played six or seven games coming into this season has played every game and played every minute and done a lot of work in those games."

Englishman Ryan Sutton set out to to this year to prove to doubters back home he could make it in the NRL and has surprised even himself with what he's been able to accomplish.

"It's been more than I thought it would be because I didn't think I'd play as many games as I have," said Sutton, who has played 19 of the Raiders' 23 matches.

"I sort of came over hoping to get my toe in and to get as many games as I could but to get the majority of the games it's been really good, and it'll help me in the coming years."

The 24-year-old knew straight away the Green Machine's class of 2019 was capable of something special and is adamant they have a golden chance to add to the club's three premierships.

"I sensed something when I came into the camp, they were a similar bunch of lads to the Wigan boys," Sutton said.

"We are very close, we do a lot of things together off the field as well as on it and I think it says a lot about the squad when we work for each other because it's such a tight group."


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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.

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