|Canberra Raiders vs Sydney Roosters NRL Betting Odds and Game Info|
|NRL betting odds||Raiders $2.10 at BetOnline | Roosters $1.90 at PlayUp|
|When||Thursday, September 2 at 7:50pm AEST|
|Where||BP Print Stadium – Mackay, Queensland|
|Last time they met||Roosters 44-16 Raiders (R12, 2021)|
|Watch live||Nine, Foxtel, Kayo|
The Canberra Raiders and Sydney Roosters will kick off the final round of the 2021 NRL regular season on Thursday evening. The two teams will travel to Mackay and it will be Canberra who have the most to play for, with a potential finals berth the reward should they get the win.
The Roosters can still finish in the top four if the Sea Eagles and Eels both lose, but there is a feeling coach Trent Robinson will just want to get through the game without losing another player to injury.
While Joseph Manu is now missing for the remainder of the season, the Tricolours will at least get Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Siosiua Taukeiaho and Angus Crichton back into the team on Thursday, while Victor Radley will be available for the finals. They are missing a who’s who of NRL stars, but to have those four players coming back into the side will give them an enormous boost.
Canberra will need the Sharks to lose as well as the Titans, but the first hurdle to climb will be the 17 Roosters jerseys in front of them in the heart of Central Queensland.
Raiders vs Roosters NRL R25 betting plays
Canberra have been hard to predict on a week-to-week basis this season, but one thing that has looked more certain each week has been Jordan Rapana’s return to his best form. A stint at fullback helped him knock a bit of weight off and it has seen him get back to his energetic, tackle-busting best. Against the Warriors he scored the winning try and ran for 286 metres with 12 tackle breaks, so the form is suggesting he is a must to get in your betting slip as a tryscorer. The other player to include is Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad, who has scored two tries in his first two games back from a neck injury, and it is believed he will start the game at fullback with Rapana reverting back to the wing.
The desperation of their situation showed last week when they fell 16-0 behind against the Warriors and were able to score 28 straight points to win the game and keep their season alive. This week they will have to start a lot better, but the 1-12 point win looks a great bet at $3.50. Nine of the past 10 games between these clubs have been decided by eight points or less, so a blowout scoreline is hard to envisage.
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It is hard to gauge where the Roosters are going to be at mentally after their spiteful and controversial 54-12 loss to the Rabbitohs. Are they inspired to make amends for Joey Manu? Are they boosted by the return of several key forwards? How strongly do they truly believe they can make it to another NRL Grand Final despite having endured one of the most unbelievable injury toll’s the game has ever seen? Some markets have them at $1.90 while others have them at $1.70, so there is a bit of variance on the feelings some different bookies have towards them.
One thing you can guarantee is that James Tedesco will feature heavily as he has done in recent weeks, so he puts himself into the frame as a try scoring must as well as a great choice to score the first of the match. Sitili Tupouniua has quickly become another player who everyone needs to back, having scored 12 tries in 21 games this year in the back row. The Raiders have been vulnerable on the edges and he will test out Jack Wighton and Sebastian Kris.
Key matchup: Josh Papalii vs Jared Waerea-Hargreaves
These two teams have played classic Finals games in recent seasons and the battle up front has been gargantuan. In the 2019 Grand Final, it was Jared Waerea-Hargreaves who many feel should have won the Clive Churchill Medal, while Josh Papalii set the tone for a Raiders’ semi-final victory at the SCG last season. Both men command enormous respect from their peers, and they will be locking horns in the early exchanges to try and earn the ascendancy. You just feel whoever gets on top propels their respective club to a win.
Raiders vs Roosters predictions & best bets
Winning margins: Canberra Raiders by 1-12 points
Canberra have become used to heartbreaking losses, and this game feels like one of those situations. The Sydney Roosters will pull out a scrappy win at the 1-12 point margin and finish fifth on the ladder.
Canberra Raiders by 1-12 points
Same game multi: 4 legs @ $29.25
Roosters 1-12 with James Tedesco, Jordan Rapana and Daniel Tupou to all score a try pays $29.25 at Sportsbet.
Roosters 1-12 / Rapana AT / Tedesco AT / Tupou AT
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