Raiders shut out Titans for wet NRL win

Canberra have kept an NRL clean sheet for the first time in six years, beating a depleted Gold Coast 21-0 on a soggy Sunday on the Gold Coast.

In a game littered with errors it was the Raiders who made the better of their opportunities in an encouraging performance by the new-look side.

The Titans will sweat on the fitness of both halves, with Ashley Taylor a late scratching and Tyrone Roberts departing inside the opening 15 minutes.

Halfback Taylor couldn’t overcome a nagging quadriceps complaint, while a ginger Roberts was helped off with a likely achilles injury.

That forced centre Tyrone Peachey into the halves to partner AJ Brimson, who was originally selected on the bench.

Taylor is hopeful of returning next week and, while initial reports were that Roberts had not ruptured the tendon, the five-eighth could still face an extended stint on the sideline.

The cobbled-together pair weren’t able to probe too often though, with the Titans coughing up the ball seven times in the first half to stunt any momentum their solid defence had earnt them.

Canberra slowly exploited that, Jarrod Croker kicking two penalties for a 4-0 lead as the rain pelted down.

Sia Soliola was first to Josh Hodgson’s grubber on the stroke of half time for a 10-0 lead.

Another Michael Gordon knock-on to start the second half – one of a combined 27 errors for the match – afforded the Raiders the platform for more points and Joey Leilua obliged on the right edge.

Brimson had a try disallowed before winger Bailey Simonsson scored on debut and an Aidan Sezer field goal sealed the win for Ricky Stuart’s men.

Raiders battering ram Josh Papalii relished the contest against Queensland Origin teammates Jarrod Wallace and Jai Arrow, while Englishman John Bateman impressed in his NRL debut.

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