Canberra Raiders break up NRL pre-season with paintball session
Advertisement

Canberra Raiders break up NRL pre-season with paintball session

If Jack Wighton dodges NRL defenders like paintballs, the Canberra Raiders fullback's in for a pretty good season.

The Raiders broke up their pre-season to celebrate Wighton and Blake Austin's birthdays to play paintball at Delta Force on Saturday.

The Canberra Raiders celebrate Jakc Wighton and Blake Austin's birthdays with paintball.

The Canberra Raiders celebrate Jakc Wighton and Blake Austin's birthdays with paintball.

Wighton was the only member of the Green Machine to make it through the shirtless gauntlet run and Sia Soliola said several players were sporting some decent bruising.

He revealed coach Ricky Stuart opted not to take part - perhaps wisely after a long, hard pre-season on the training track.

Advertisement
Canberra Raiders veteran Sia Soliola says activities like paintball were just as important as pre-season.

Canberra Raiders veteran Sia Soliola says activities like paintball were just as important as pre-season.

"We got a fair few welts here and there ... [but] the boys really enjoyed it and they definitely want to go back," Soliola said.

"I was just happy to get through that first one.

"We tried to convince [Ricky] to play, but he understood the risks that he'd undertake if he made that choice."

It's less than 10 days before the Raiders' trial against the Canterbury Bulldogs on the Sunshine Coast on February 17 and Soliola said activities that broke up all the running and hard work of a pre-season could be just as valuable as the pre-season itself.

They leave for Queensland early next week for a training camp ahead of their only trial as the clock winds down towards their round one clash against the Gold Coast Titans on the Gold Coast on March 11.

He said they were continuing to work on the things that let them down last season as the Green Machine hoped to return to the NRL top eight.

"It's definitely really important because you're working so hard on the field sometimes you've got to have an outlet," Soliola said.

"Sure coffees and all that stuff is quite nice, but to do activities, active stuff, because we're guys and we like to have a bit of laugh here and there.

"It's just as important as the work we do on the field as well - as long as everything is controlled."

Soliola said while the Raiders didn't have many off-season recruits, he'd been impressed by some of the juniors that have joined the senior squad.

Emre Guler, Jack Murchie and Sebastian Kris have all shown potential during the pre-season.

"Myself and the club believe that they have a future in rugby league if they maintain their work ethic," Soliola said.

Soliola's off contract at the end of the season and has previously said he wanted to be absolutely sure before deciding whether he would play on.

But he felt discussions between his manager and the Raiders could begin soon and were a "work in progress".

David Polkinghorne covers the Canberra Raiders, local rugby league, Canberra Cavalry, racing and cycling, along with every other sport, for The Canberra Times.

Most Viewed in Sport

Loading
Advertisement