Raiders keep faint finals hopes alive

Josh Dugan

It was a win that they desperately needed in order to keep their finals hopes alive, and they got it – with the Canberra Raiders winning a closely-fought contest over the Roosters, 24-20.

Despite their win, however, the talking point will be the sending off of Roosters fullback Anthony Minichello, for two attempts at Dugan’s head with the forearm, in which he was put on report for, as well as sent off for.

It was man-of-the-match Josh Dugan, who perhaps may not remember patches of the game due to the big hit, and in-form five-eighth Josh McCrone that inspired the win, as the Raiders finals hopes remain intact.

The win was the Raiders third straight, the first time they have won three straight games since 2010 – as they look to make the finals in 2012.

“We have to keep winning games and it gives us an opportunity to keep going,” coach David Furner told reporters after the game.

Although Dugan require stitches for his head wound, Raiders coach David Furner said that he nor Dugan, believed that Minichello was a dirty player.

“I don’t think he’s that sort of player, sometimes you are trying to win games, but it did not look good,” he said.

Whilst Roosters coach Brian Smith did not want to discuss the incident, he said that there were two close calls against his side, that could have turned the tide of the match.

“You can’t say we would have won because they could have chip kicked and regathered and won by 20,” Smith said.

“You look at a four-point deficit on the scoreboard and all the things we did well but not quite enough.

“They had eight sets more than us tonight and our guys finished the game full of running we had a great opportunity playing against a team going for the playoffs.”

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