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The Raiders make their long-awaited return to GIO Stadium this Sunday afternoon against the in-form Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks.

We’ve put together a list of five things we can’t wait to see as the Green Machine look to put an end to the Sharks’ three-game winning streak.

THE HOME GROUND: See the full story on the Raiders website.

Battle of the big men

Raiders front-row trio Frank-Paul Nuuausala, Paul Vaughan, and Shannon Boyd all have a big task ahead of them on Sunday: to shut down Andrew Fifita.

Fifita was in devastating form for the Sharks on the weekend, running for 160 metres and breaking eight tackles along the way. The Sharks prop injected himself into representative calculations with his dominant display, and the Raiders forwards will be relishing the chance to come up against one of the best in the competition.

Fantasy favourites go head-to-head

Workhorse Shaun Fensom has the chance to push for representative selection this Sunday when he comes up against New South Wales skipper Paul Gallen.

Two must-haves for any NRL Fantasy coach, Fensom and Gallen’s respective workloads suggest that neither side is going to give an inch in the middle third.

Backline tackle busters

With the battle in the middle of the field shaping up to be a pearler, both sides will look to their speedsters to bust through the opposition’s tiring forward pack.

The Raiders backs combined for eighteen tackle busts in a tough outing on the weekend, whilst the eight Sharks players that rotated through the backline registered 28 tackle busts between them.

If the Raiders halves combination clicks, there is no limit to what the hosts are capable of.

Ottio the offensive weapon

Mounties winger Kato Ottio secured his third ISP Team of the Week selection with a barnstorming display against Wentworthville, and will continue his push for an NRL debut this weekend against Manly-Warringah.

The former Papua New Guinean volleyball representative had eighteen carries for over 200 metres in last week’s top of the table clash. Remember the name Raiders fans, for it may be just a matter of time before we see him in a lime green jersey.

Brett’s boys due for a W

WLWLWL – that’s the Raiders’ NYC season so far.

If that trend continues, a win is on the horizon for a Raiders outfit riddled with injury. Coach Brett White will be looking for consistency from his side, and that begins this Sunday with a bright and early start against the in-form Sharks.

STORY FILED FOR THE CANBERRA RAIDERS

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