NRL Round 8 – Match 3 Results: New Zealand Warriors 16 v Canberra Raiders 23

The first game on Saturday was one of the shock NRL results from Round 8, as the inconsistent Raiders managed to travel to New Zealand and claim a commanding win ahead of the Warriors, 23 – 16.

Canberra has had a fairly disappointing season to date, suffering a few big losses at home, so it came as a surprise to many when they were able to win as far away as Auckland in just their second away win from their last 10 as the visitors.

The Warriors have now suffered three successive defeats, following their massive losses to both the Storm and the Panthers over the last few rounds, and will be thankful for their bye in Round 9.

The opening half belonged to the visitors as they got in with three unanswered tries, including an impressive double to debutant Drury Low, in the first quarter while managing to keep the Warriors scoreless at the same time for the full first half.

Low, who was a late inclusion into the Canberra squad, was first to score in the 11th minute and the conversion by Terry Campese gave them an early six point lead.

In the 17th minute prop David Shillington added another converted try to their advantage, just three minutes before Low completed his first half double in a dream debut for the Green Machine.

No more points were scored in the first half and the Warriors were in big trouble as they went to the break trailing 16 – nil.

Just two minutes into the second half New Zealand began a strong fight to come back from their 16 point deficit when Ukuma Ta’ai, with some fancy footwork, and kicker James Maloney combined to put the first six points on the board for the home team.

With Canberra having faded in many of their second-half performances this year, the 11,500 crowd braving the wet conditions were hopeful it would happen again to give the NZ squad a chance.

The Warriors managed another two before the games end, one by Patrick Ah Van in the 58th minute and another by Brent Tate just three minutes from full time. Maloney kicked one of the two to bring New Zealand’s final score up to 16, but despite their best efforts it had been too little too late.

Canberra’s Joel Thompson broke up the Warriors momentum with his own try in the 62nd minute, which Campese converted, and a field goal by Marc Herbert in the 71st minute meant that the Raiders were able to coast to victory finishing up with 23 points and proving they can hang onto a half-time lead.