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Canberra Raiders embarrassed by Warriors as season hits new low

Warriors 54 Raiders 18

The Incredible Hulk they are not: Canberra's team after conceding yet another try to the Warriors.

The Incredible Hulk they are not: Canberra's team after conceding yet another try to the Warriors. Photo: Getty Images

The Canberra Raiders nightmare season reached an embarrassing new low with an insipid 54-18 home loss to New Zealand that centre Jarrod Croker described as “garbage”.

And the carnage extended to the injury front, with prop David Shillington (pectoral), Shaun Fensom (anterior cruciate ligament) and Kurt Baptiste (shoulder) expected to miss the rest of the season.

Sealed with a kiss: Warriors centre Konrad Hurrell scores against the Raiders.

Sealed with a kiss: Warriors centre Konrad Hurrell scores against the Raiders. Photo: Getty Images

Skipper Terry Campese may join them after suffering a rib injury he admitted ‘’doesn’t feel too crash hot’’.

Some Raiders fans booed their team off the field at half-time after one of the most inept 40 minutes by any side this season.

Canberra is optimistic Fensom may have escaped with a minor strain. They’ll have their fingers crossed that the two-time Mal Meninga medallist isn’t sidelined long term.

Raiders players Jarrod Croker and Reece Robinson reacts after their loss to the Warriors. Click for more photos

Canberra Raiders v New Zealand Warriors

Canberra Raiders v Warriors at Canberra Stadium. Photo: Melissa Adams

Raiders fans have endured some ordinary showings this year, but they made their frustrations abundantly clear by jeering the players at half-time.

The Raiders are now ahead of last-placed Cronulla with a 37-point superior for-and-against, and are surely unbackable favourites for a first wooden spoon since 1982.

It is the second time the Warriors have belted the Raiders this season after winning 54-12  across the ditch in round nine.

That display forced coach Ricky Stuart to apologise afterwards but, injuries aside, nothing can excuse the bloodbath he couldn’t find the words to explain.

“Hard, very hard. I don't have any words,’’ he said.

“It's very disappointing and there's a lot of people in there hurting. 

“I'm very mindful of what we're dealing with here and how it's dealt with, it's a tough job. 

“There's a lot of things being exposed with performances like that.

“The players are certainly committing themselves, we’re working hard during the week.

“I'll talk to the players more about today's performance, today isn't the day to talk to them. They're hurting and we have to be mindful of the situation we're at.’’ 

Stuart implored his side to win back the respect of the crowd when down 28-0 in his half-time address, but the hole was only dug deeper after the break.  

Playing in Hulk jerseys for a Marvel Comics promotion, it was the Raiders who were smashed and made to look comical.

The green hero’s powers only come to life when he’s angry, and Stuart would have been close to his own Hulk impression in the coaches box.

Canberra was made to look like second graders in defence and were clueless in attack in arguably its most humiliating defeat in an already dark year.

Unfortunately the Raiders don’t have much to hang their hats on to be optimistic about next year either.

Star fullback Anthony Milford is heading to Brisbane, vice-captain Brett White is retiring and their only signing of note is Melbourne flyer Sisa Waqa.

They need more than a winger to turn this mess around, and Croker described the display as “embarrassing” on ABC Radio.

He added White “doesn’t deserve that garbage’’ in the final games of his career.

Respected commentator and rugby league Immortal Bob Fulton rated it “amateur hour’’ on 2GB.

It was the Warriors first win in Canberra since 2001, its first at Canberra Stadium since Super League and snapped a seven-game losing streak in the capital.

And it was the first win in four matches without star playmaker Shaun Johnson, who missed with a groin injury, since he debuted in 2011.

The win catapulted the Warriors into sixth on the NRL table, and ensured an enjoyable homecoming for coach Andrew McFadden, a former Raiders assistant.

Winger Manu Vatuvei terrorised Canberra again with three tries, and the Warriors are shaping as a dangerous lurker in the bottom half of the eight.

Canberra enjoyed plenty of possession early, but their faltering attack couldn’t find a try.

When it came time to try and stop them, it made every error in the book and was toyed with by the Warriors attack.

A major problem all season, the Raiders edge defence was again embarrassed by the Warriors, who made 12 line breaks to Canberra’s three.

Warriors stars Konrad Hurrell, Sam Tomkins, Jacob Lillyman and Thomas Leuluai didn’t finish the match with niggles, but McFadden said it was only precautionary.

“Konrad tightened up in his hamstring and it wasn’t worth risking him, Sam got a bump on his hip and Jacob twisted an ankle,’’ he said.

“We never planned to play Thomas for 80 minutes coming back from a groin injury, it tightened up so we took him off.

“I think anyone in the finals will give themselves a chance, that’s how close the competition is.’’

NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS 54 (Manu Vatuvei 3, Sam Rapira 2, Sione Lousi, Sam Tomkins, Konrad Hurrell, Ben Matulino, Ngani Laumape tries; Chad Townsend 7 goals) bt CANBERRA RAIDERS 18 (Josh McCrone, Paul Vaughan, Reece Robinson tries; Jarrod Croker 3 goals) at Canberra Stadium on Sunday. Crowd: 7094. Referees: Gavin Morris and Gavin Reynolds.


  • Honestly, that was the worst performance I have ever seen from a Raiders team. Sticky wont talk to them today because they are hurting, boobloodyhoo he has been saying that all season maybe its time to stop babying them and give them a spray about what pathetic losers they were today and how they are embarrassing a proud club. Not sure where this commitment is that keeps being spoke of but if someone saw any today can they point it out to me? If I performed like that in my job no doubt I wouldn't have one anymore. The booing and jeering from the crowd was more than deserved.

    Raiders through and through
    Date and time
    August 03, 2014, 7:00PM
    • I would like to know who Ricky Stuart will blame now..... will be interesting!!!!!!!!

      Date and time
      August 03, 2014, 7:45PM
      • If you’re a ‘Supercoach’ as I have been reading in the media about Stuart for years (palm slap to forehead) then it will always be someone else’s fault.
        I blame those who don’t see his ability for what it really is.

        Drowning Not Waving
        Date and time
        August 04, 2014, 10:35AM
    • It has been astonishing to witness this club sink to new lows, week in, week out. We are now down to the stubborn, die-hard supporters as the crowd figure today shows. The worst thing is, there are people who have supported the Raiders for decades that simply don't care enough anymore. Why should they, when our Board, Management and players appear to care even less? I can only hope that the spoon we will inevitably 'win' this year may accelerate the 're-build' that I'm so sick of hearing about.

      Date and time
      August 03, 2014, 7:54PM
      • What? Another Stuart rebuild? Thank God Parra. got shut of him. Feel sorry for Canberra. If only he would coach one of my 'favourite' teams.

        Date and time
        August 03, 2014, 8:58PM
      • I am hoping that NSWRL offer Ricky the coaching job for the Blues again in next years SOO! I'm starting the petition and will be the first to sign.

        Brissie Boy
        Date and time
        August 04, 2014, 10:05AM
    • I was there and it was disgraceful. The team were appalling and deserved the boos. I wish we had rotten fruit to throw at them. I find it hard to believe I pay good money for 5 season tickets to be presented with such garbage. I can handle losses if they look like they are playing well and with heart but the display earlier was utter trash. What a waste of money and a waste of a beautiful Sunday afternoon.

      Date and time
      August 03, 2014, 7:55PM
      • Real fans wouldnt want to throw rotten fruit at their team.

        You sound like a spoilt brat who cant get his way.

        Date and time
        August 04, 2014, 11:41AM
      • What's eating you Tony ?

        The Raiders players and coach deserve absolutely anything that can be slung their way - including rotten fruit.

        Ricky Stuart needs to be buried under a couple of tons of rotten tomatoes for his pathetic coaching of the Raiders in 2014.

        The Raiders are plumbing new lows on a weekly basis.

        Sack the Coach
        NOW !!!
        Date and time
        August 04, 2014, 12:52PM
    • At least the Raiders won the fashion show.

      Date and time
      August 03, 2014, 8:10PM

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