A young and confident Canberra Raiders side have jumped into the winners circle with a rampant 48-18 victory over the Andrew Johns-led Newcastle Knights tonight.
In front of a bumper home crowd, the Raiders showed even more improvement on their round 2 effort against the Storm, converting a 4-point halftime lead into a 30-point drubbing, all but erasing memories of their heavy loss to the Knights at home last year.
The Raiders were led around the park superbly by their young halves combination of Michael Dobson and Todd Carney, with rising star William Zillman continuing his remarkable strike rate against the Knights with a hat-trick of tries.
Up front it was Dane Tilse again leading the way for the Green Machine, while Neville Costigan, Trevor Thurling and Ben Jones were all outstanding in what was a great team effort.
The result gives Alan Tongue his first NRL victory as captain of the Raiders.
CFMEU Canberra Raiders 48 (William Zillman 3, Marshall Chalk, Lincoln Withers, Scott Logan, Colin Best, Phil Graham tries; Michael Dobson 8 goals) d. Newcastle Knights 18 (Adam Macdougall, Milton Thaiday, Cory Paterson tries; Andrew Johns 3 goals) at Canberra Stadium
Referee: Ben Cummins