CANBERRA is fighting to retain one of its most valuable assets, with Queensland-based scout Brian Edwards on the radar of the Brisbane Broncos.
Edwards remains contracted with the Raiders, but the Broncos are making a major push to poach the man who has spotted a wealth of talent from within their own backyard.
Losing Edwards would leave a massive hole in the Raiders' recruitment strategy and be a tough break for incoming coach Ricky Stuart.
Queensland State of Origin star Josh Papalii, player of the year Anthony Milford and towering outside back Edrick Lee are some Edwards' finds.
The Raiders have had a strong presence in south-east Queensland.
Club legends Mal Meninga and Gary Belcher are both products of the Souths Magpies. The Raiders have extended that presence into the Logan area.
The Raiders previously sent their excess first-grade players into the Queensland Cup as part of a feeder club arrangement with the Souths Logan Magpies. However, a change to registration rules by the NSWRL a couple of years ago forced the Raiders to leave the Queensland Cup and find an alternative arrangement in NSW.
While the Raiders now have Mounties in the NSW Cup as their feeder club, they still boast ties in south-east Queensland in junior development.
The Raiders are considering their investment in junior development following the NRL's decision to deny granting a second-tier salary cap exemption to allow young gun Mitch Cornish to make his first-grade debut.
Cornish is a Goulburn junior and will captain the club's under 20s in Sunday's qualifying final against the Bulldogs.
The Broncos are desperate to bolster their junior ranks after seeing some of the brightest prospects in the state thrive at rival clubs.
They have secured Ben Barba for next season, and want Milford if he exercises a get-out clause with the Raiders.