By Nathan Beuman
The St George Illawarra Dragons will look to rebound from their first lose in two months when they take on the Canberra Raiders at WIN Stadium, Wollongong on Sunday (2.00pm).
It was a second-half comeback in their last encounter earlier this season which turned around the Dragons form.
Prior to a narrow 16-10 loss to the South Sydney Rabbitohs last round, the Dragons were on the crest of a six game winning streak, there longest in four season.
Still boasting the best defensive record in the competition by a remarkable 24 points, the Dragons will be keen to test themselves against a Raiders outfit that leads the competition in points scored (23.4 points per game).
The Green Machine have been on fire over the last three weeks, knocking off the Wests Tigers, South Sydney Rabbitohs and Gold Coast Titans, all while averaging 38.7 points per game.
While the Raiders will be without former Dragon, Sam Williams, they won’t lose much, with exciting young halfback Mitch Cornish set to make his way into the starting line-up for Ricky Stuart.
With a bye coming up Sunday week, the Dragons will be desperate to head into the week off with a win, as they prepare to play just their second game in Wollongong this season.
The Dragons have named an unchanged 17 for the clash against Canberra, with Josh Dugan getting through last weeks game unscathed, and is expected to line up at fullback.
As mentioned, the Raiders have been forced to rush Mitch Cornish into the #7 jersey, after Sam Williams’s suffered a punctured lung against the Gold Coast Titans.
David Shillington is a chance of playing for Canberra, with the former Australian prop being named as 18th man after playing his way back from injury in the NSW Cup last week.
Gates Open: 11:30am
The Dragons will proudly be supporting the Joanne Mackay Breast Cancer Foundation as part of Women In League Round against the Canberra Raiders at WIN Stadium, Wollongong on Sunday.
The Foundation is in honour of the wife of former St George, Illawarra, St George Illawarra, NSW and Australian representative Brad Mackay who sadly lost his wife to breast cancer.
The Joanne Mackay Breast Cancer Foundation is a long-term Dragons charity that focuses on the fundamental and emotional needs of patients and their families during the treatment of breast cancer.
The Foundation will facilitate several activities in and around the venue on game day to raise donations including a bucket collection which take place around the venue as well as several stalls where official scarves and other paraphernalia will be available for purchase.
Additionally, representatives from the Foundation as well as Bria Mackay will help form an on-field guard of honour for the players when they take to the field prior to kick-off.
Furthermore, the team will proudly be wearing pink socks in recognition of the Foundation when they take to the field.
Additionally, the Dragons have launched a new “Flexi Pass” three game Red V Membership that will allow supporters to choose which of remaining home games they want to attend during the 2015 season, across all venues.