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Ricky Stuart blasts Canberra Raiders after loss to South Sydney Rabbitohs

Rabbitohs 34 Raiders 18

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Rabbitohs' win comes at a cost

Injuries to Sam Burgess and John Sutton sour a 34-18 victory for South Sydney over Canberra at GIO Stadium on Monday night.

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Canberra coach Ricky Stuart labelled his side’s basic errors of ‘’Queensland or NSW Cup standard’’ as the Raiders’ wooden spoon odds shortened with a 34-18 home loss to South Sydney on Monday night.

But the second-placed Rabbitohs’ quest to break their premiership drought copped a huge blow with John Sutton and Sam Burgess both suffering injuries and failing to complete the match.

John Sutton of the Rabbitohs receives treatment for an injury against the Raiders.

John Sutton of the Rabbitohs receives treatment for an injury against the Raiders. Photo: Getty Images

Canberra slumped to its ninth loss in its past 11 games, and its home record is a poor two wins from eight matches.

It is now in jeopardy of securing a first spoon since its maiden 1982 season. The Raiders are equal last with Cronulla, and only ahead of the Sharks on points differential.

It must seem like Groundhog Day for Stuart, who was in no mood to sugar coat things after his side committed 12 errors to the Rabbitohs' five. 

Bryson Goodwin scores one of his two tries.

Bryson Goodwin scores one of his two tries. Photo: Getty Images

“It wasn’t of a first grade standard,’’ Stuart said. “We didn’t complete our sets and made eight errors [in the first half].

“We made errors I see in NSW Cup or Q Cup, it’s quite common throughout our season and if you don’t complete your sets of six you’re on the back end of a tough day.’’

Five-eighth Sutton lasted just five minutes before leaving the field with a medial ligament issue to his right knee, while Burgess didn’t finish the match with a shoulder problem.

Front: Rabbitohs player Ben Lowe in action. Click for more photos

NRL: Canberra Raiders vs South Sydney Rabbitohs

The Canberra Raiders take on the South Sydney Rabbitohs at GIO Stadium. Photo: Melissa Adams

Fellow Rabbitohs back-rower Ben Te'o was also placed on report for a lifting tackle on Raiders centre Jarrod Croker. 

South Sydney’s long-suffering fans will be praying the injuries aren’t too serious as the club seeks a first title since 1971.

Sutton seems certain to miss at least a few weeks at after he confirmed the diagnosis to Fox Sports.

“The doc said it was very loose, he said if I kept playing you could hurt your ACL (anterior cruciate ligament),’’ Sutton said. 

“Hopefully I get it right and I’m back in a few weeks.’’

Depending on the severity of Sutton’s injury, 22-year-old Luke Keary could be charged with helping steer the ship in the finals.

He was solid in tandem with Adam Reynolds, whom he has been putting pressure on to retain his place, when he came off the bench.

Reynolds scored two tries and was brilliant throughout, as was Rabbitohs centre Dylan Walker.

“Adam and I have had some good discussions this week,there’s been a lot of talk about Adam and what’s happening,’’ Souths coach Michael Maguire said.

“But Adam just stayed with his game and I think he and Luke stood up.’’

Maguire estimated Sutton could miss up to two to three weeks, but the damage wouldn’t be officially known until he has scans.

It’s the same situation with Burgess, the English international seen icing his shoulder after leaving the field in the second half.

“Sam’s a bit concerned about it, I’m not going to lie to you, but until you get scans it’s hard to tell,’’ Maguire said.

“Sam said it got sore internally, what that means scans will tell us.’’

The only shining light for Canberra was Croker’s 15th try of the season, which drew him level with Parramatta’s Semi Radradra atop the NRL top try scorers' list.

The Raiders’ defensive woes on either edge were ruthlessly exposed, with Keary and Reynolds terrorising Raiders winger Sami Sauiluma with great effect.

An early Croker penalty gave Canberra a 2-0 lead, but the visitors hit back immediately with tries to Walker, Alex Johnston and Bryson Goodwin to take a 12-2 half-time lead.

Early in the second half they were gifted their fourth try when Raiders fullback Anthony Milford left a Walker kick in the belief it was going dead in-goal.

However it stayed just inside the field of play to gift Johnston his second four-pointer of the game and swell the lead to 16-2.

Only poor early goal kicking from Reynolds kept Canberra in the game, and Sauiluma redeemed himself with one of the tries of the season.

Sauiluma threw himself in the air and planted the ball just inside the sideline with a tremendous athletic effort.

It handed Canberra momentum, who hammered the try-line for the next few minutes but couldn’t find the breakthrough.

With 18 minutes left Reynolds finished off a superb Rabbitohs movement to seal the match at 22-6.

The Raiders scored fine consolation tries through Croker and Milford, but the damage had been done. 

SOUTH SYDNEY RABBITOHS 34 (Alex Johnston 2, Bryson Goodwin 2, Adam Reynolds 2, Dylan Walker tries; Reynolds 3 goals) bt CANBERRA RAIDERS 18 (Sami Sauiluma, Jarrod Croker, Anthony Milford tries; Jarrod Croker 3 goals) at Canberra Stadium on Monday night. Crowd: 9526. Referees: Ashley Klein and Chris Butler.

36 comments

  • Ricky is now on track for back to back wooden spoons.......maybe it is he who isn't at first grade level.

    Commenter
    Burto
    Location
    Emu Plains
    Date and time
    July 29, 2014, 7:13AM
    • Hooray and about time we the poor suffering fans who support this verging on pathetic Rugby League team were allowed to comment and yes they are pathetic and yes we are looking for answers. Perhaps if your paper allowed more open debate then the power of the public may see some improvement from this sadly disappointing football team and a bit more accountability from the favorite son who despite his obvious lack of past success has managed to secure a very very healthy package from the club. Management it seems need to be more accountable. If the paper allows more comment then perhaps we may be convinced that the Raiders don't control the Canberra sports media.

      Commenter
      Ian
      Date and time
      July 29, 2014, 7:35AM
      • Agree Totally Ian

        Looks like Ricky Stuart has in less than a season of football managed to take the club all the way back to its initial grass roots season of 1982.

        Only difference between then and now is that in 1982 the Club was only just starting out and there was an abundance of hope, optimism and raw skill that helped get the club on the road to success.

        Today we have a club in the throes of eternal decline being pushed further into oblivion by a totally useless coach who refuses to see himself for what he is - a total failure trying to duck and weave while at the same time making off like a bandit.

        Shame Raiders - what have you let yourselves become ?

        Commenter
        No More
        Location
        Pleasant Valley Sunday
        Date and time
        July 29, 2014, 8:58AM
      • I have been willing to give Ricky the benifit this year but some of his selections and his interchange timings have absolutely bamboozled me. From the Whiton number 6 debarcle (should have been over after 2 weeks) to not putting Cornish on until it's to late then not selecting him ever again (brookes can't defend for tigers but still plays because of attack) when we have the most predictable "I only pass it" sideways crab attack in the comp. Why did Baptise get 2 minutes last night and only came on in the second half? He's actually fast out of dummy half. Why did Shannon Boyd get 1 minute lat night? Why put Brett White back in the team when we were fast and illusive and won our last game without him. With Furner (as bad as he may have been) I never had so many questions on selections, I usually agreed with him and had faith with his decisions. With Ricky, I'm very frustrated...

        Commenter
        jon
        Date and time
        July 29, 2014, 1:17PM
    • Were the Raiders supposed to win?

      Commenter
      MudFlap
      Date and time
      July 29, 2014, 7:37AM
      • Considering that the Raiders have only about 6 or 7 players who are up to first grade standard, it wasn't a bad performance.

        Commenter
        Gassius
        Location
        Kambah
        Date and time
        July 29, 2014, 7:53AM
        • Wish Mick Potter was our coach and not this clown Stuart. How many teams can he coach to a wooden spoon?

          Commenter
          Ricky the wooden spoon maker
          Location
          Canberra
          Date and time
          July 29, 2014, 7:58AM
          • Ricky Stuart should blasts himself. Always full of excuses and blames. We want a winning team in Canberra, we are not interest in the internal affairs of the club.

            Commenter
            Robilant
            Date and time
            July 29, 2014, 8:21AM
            • Not for the first time I switched channels after 30 minutes of low level technical skills and stereotyped tactical play in what has become a very boring game. I attend Canberra Raiders Cup games and the skills differential between a Queanbeyan game and a Raiders game isn't great enough to see me investing time in watching just bigger and faster blokes do the same things just as poorly. A lack of innovation and flare at the NRL level from both players and coaches at the NRL level is encouraged by a knee jerk responsive ad hoc administration that cannot see the real Rugby League game for the populist quick fix trees.

              Commenter
              waggamick
              Location
              canberra
              Date and time
              July 29, 2014, 8:41AM
              • Stuart is pretty good at blasting players, referees or administrators but never accepting responsibility himself. His temper and his attitude is not reflective of a good leader and his first grade NRL coaching career should be brought to a long overdue close. While there are clearly issues with the player's performance it might have more to do with his ability to lead and motivate them to deliver on their potential.

                Commenter
                Greg MC
                Location
                Canberra
                Date and time
                July 29, 2014, 9:08AM

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                Comments are now closed

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