Three premierships, countless stars produced and a proud fan base, the Canberra Raiders have been blessed with talent.
With so many quality players to have played for them since their inception, picking an elite side is never easy.
Though here, we will do our best, and make sure the Raiders side picked is the best of the best.
Our top 17 Raiders side is:
- Gary Belcher – A genuine attacking fullback, Belcher is up there with the game’s finest. He ran with confidence, prowess but could also defend resolutely. He was a club stalwart and held club records in the past.
2. Brett Mullins – Adept at fullback or wing, if there was one thing Mullins enjoyed, it was scoring tries. Fast and quick, he could swerve at pace and had Raiders fans excited for years.
3. Jarrod Croker – An all-time team would not be complete without Jarrod Croker. Still playing, he will likely break every club record upon retirement. And he is a talented player to boot.
4. Mal Meninga – No greatest ever side for the Raiders is complete without Mal. At the top of his game for most of his career, he is forever seen as one of the greatest centres ever. Remarkably, his best years came AFTER he broke his arm four times in eighteen months.
5. Ken Nagas – A powerful centre/winger, Nagas was a tough man to bring down even on a bad day. He could run all day and was a guy that epitomised toughness and tenacity.
6. Laurie Daley – Perhaps the greatest Raider of all-time, Daley was a prodigious talent. At just 17, he was already in first-grade. Versatile and deceptively strong, he often had the ball on a string.
7. Ricky Stuart – Gifted, that is how you describe Stuart. His kicking game was seen as the best during his hey-day and it played a huge role in the Canberra premierships.
8. Ruben Wiki – A centre turned forward, Wiki was a powerhouse whether he was scoring tries or running over opponents. Strong and mobile, he was a human wrecking ball.
9. Simon Woolford – A loyal Raiders servant, the Young local worked his backside off the club and is often an unheralded player for the side.
10. Luke Davico – Every club needs a workhorse in the middle of the field and Davico was that man for the Raiders. He went about his business quietly but efficiently over many years for the club.
11. Jason Croker – Hard-working, tenacious and a club legend, if there was one thing Croker enjoyed, it was scoring tries. Held numerous club records and still holds some (though Jarrod Croker will soon change it all).
12. David Furner – Known for his goal-kicking exploits, Furner was also a worker and toiled for the Raiders. At one point, he was the top point-scoring forward in the game’s history.
13. Bradley Clyde – He may have just been 18 when he debuted, but there was no stopping Clyde. His work ethic, his hard-nosed approach, all on display, and he quickly became an elite and an essential Raiders player.
14. Steve Walters – Another loyal Raiders servant, Walters was considered the best dummy half in the world at one point in the mid 90’s. Enjoyed 11 seasons with the Raiders.
15. Alan Tongue – An absolute workhorse and a quality captain. They are the two traits that epitomise Tongue and deservedly so.
2008 was his accolade year, winning captain and lock of the year.
16. Dane Tilse – Not a household name but the tall, lanky forward still packed a punch and did amass 200+ games for the Raiders.
17. Josh Papalii – Just the second of two modern Raiders but he deserves a spot. In recent years, since a move to prop, he has gone from strength to strength. A loyal Raiders player.
Coach: Ricky Stuart; some of these players he played with, creating that Raiders dynasty and now as coach, he has a long, rich and proud history with the Canberra Raiders.