NRL 2020: Melbourne Storm vs Canberra Raiders, Week Three Preview

NRL 2020: Melbourne Storm vs Canberra Raiders, Week Three Preview
NRL 2020: Melbourne Storm vs Canberra Raiders, Week Three Preview
Canberra have done quite a bit to overcome the great pain of last year by taking revenge on the Roosters in the playoffs, but now the mighty Melbourne is blocking the path to consecutive appearances in the season finale.

While Raiders stars Josh Papalii, Joe Tapine and Jack Wighton stood ready for a famous win on Friday, the Storm took a break after defeating Parramatta the week before.

Melbourne haven’t lost in Queensland in 19 games, so Canberra face a difficult task at Suncorp Stadium. However, Ricky Stuart’s troops have proven time and again that they thrive in adverse circumstances.

These teams have played some great games lately, not least in the first week of the 2019 Final when Canberra celebrated a 12:10 win at Fortress AAMI Park of the Storm.

The rundown


Sturm: Fifth and eighth star Cameron Munster trained over the weekend and is on track having used the week off to rehabilitate his knee injury. Back rower Tom Eisenhuth (Kalb) was able to return but center forward Dale Finucane (Kalb) and Tui Kamikamica (foot) were only seen as out of hope by soccer manager Frank Ponissi last week.

Raiders: Without major injuries from the Roosters game, Ricky Stuart was able to reach an unchanged 17 for the second week in a row.

Key match

Jesse Bromwich versus Josh Papalii. The ever-constant Bromwich faces the challenge of eliminating the opposing enforcer Papalii from the front row, who at times carried Canberra with his inspiring efforts. There are some other great one-on-one fights – namely Cameron Munster and Jack Wighton (five eighths) – but in the engine room this game will likely be won.

Stat Attack

A completion rate of 90 percent (38/42 sentences) brought the Raiders to victory over the roosters. The simplicity of holding the ball and the desperation in defense could be key to overthrowing the electric storm, which finished 73 percent in its win over the Eels.

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