JARROD CROKER wants his chance at redemption and has urged his Canberra Raiders teammates to have faith in him when the game is on the line.
Croker has put the pain of his crucial missed penalty goal in the 2010 finals behind him to become just the fourth player in Raiders history to surpass 200 points in a single season.
He joins the representative trio Clinton Schifcofske (245 points in 2001 and 222 in 2003), Gary Belcher (218 points in 1988) and Mal Meninga (212 points in 1990) in the select group.
Croker has a chance to extend his tally of 206 points, consisting of a career-best 16 tries and 71 goals, in tomorrow's match against the New Zealand Warriors in Auckland.
Barring a miracle haul from South Sydney halfback Adam Reynolds - his closest challenger with 178 - Croker will become the NRL's leading pointscorer two years after the most difficult moment of his career.
The 21-year-old had a chance to keep Canberra's season alive only to miss a 30-metre penalty goal as the Wests Tigers held on 26-24 in front of a sold-out Canberra Stadium.
The Raiders are in the running to host their first final since that epic night if they beat the Warriors and the Cronulla Sharks lose to the North Queensland Cowboys.
''I guess it would be [a chance at redemption],'' Croker said.
''It's something that obviously wasn't a very good feeling and takes a bit to get over.
''Something like that's hard to forget, but if I'm going to be a better kicker, I've got to put that behind me. Hopefully the boys have a bit of confidence in me and I can repay them.''
Croker's goal-kicking percentage is at the lowest it has been since he took over the duties from injured captain Terry Campese in 2010.
After a stunning 84 per cent success rate two years ago, he has gone from 78 per cent last year to a still respectable 73 per cent this year.
Croker will check in with renowned sharp shooter Daryl Halligan when the Raiders train in Auckland this weekend.
''I've been striking them OK this year, but I don't think I've kicked as good as I did leading into that game, so I'd like to get back to where I was,'' he said.
''You still see some of the best in the business miss kicks like that.
''It just comes down to how you hit them. Hopefully if it comes down to it again I do put it over the posts.''
The massive improvement has come in his ability to find the try-line. Croker's haul of 16 four-pointers is the equal fourth-highest in the competition and easily tops the 12 tries he scored in his debut season in 2009.
It is also more than double the tally he racked up in the past two years combined.
Croker is quickly closing in on a century of first-grade games. On track to pass the milestone before his 23rd birthday, the man from Goulburn has played the past 87 straight times for the Raiders, not missing a match since round 10, 2009.
He is one of only three players, along with Josh McCrone and Josh Papalii, to feature in every match this season.
And while the Raiders have surprised nearly everyone but themselves to storm back into finals contention, Croker is adamant the job isn't done yet against a Warriors side with nothing to lose.
''We're not guaranteed anything,'' he said.
''We need to go over there and face a Warriors side who are going to be very enthusiastic.''