Rapana is fit for Raiders’ Manly match

Wednesday April 19, 2017 Written by Published in League

Canberra winger Jordan Rapana has declared himself fit for his side’s NRL clash with Manly, despite a knee injury which threatened to rule him out of the game.

 

Rapana suffered a knock to the knee in last week’s win over the Warriors, but fought through pain to play out the match.

“I’ll be training today and out there with the boys on Friday,” Rapana said.

“I just went into a tackle and got it caught wrong, but I managed to play the whole 80 (minutes) on it so it seems to be alright.

“I pulled up a bit sore, but I’ve been getting physio today and it feels a lot better.”

That will be worrying news for Manly’s left-edge defence which was described by coach Trent Barrett as passive and “like a deer in the headlights” after their 30-26 loss to Melbourne last week.

Rapana wants his right-side partners in crime Joey Leilua, Elliott Whitehead and Blake Austin to continue their rich vein of form in Friday night’s match at GIO Stadium, where he expects Manly’s defence to respond to the challenge.

“They’ve got young (Brian) Kelly and he’s been quality for them and obviously Jorge Taufua is a big boy,” Rapana said.

“I think they’re quality players and I have no doubt they’ll be doing their homework on me, Joey, Elliott and ‘Austo’.

“We’ve just got to make sure we focus on us and don’t be complacent.”

While the “Leipana” combination may have caught some by surprise last season, they have evolved into one of the competition’s most high-profile and deadly attacking weapons.

And Rapana is relishing the extra attention.

“You cop a couple of cheap shots and get whacked a bit, but that’s alright,” Rapana said.

“It pushes us to another level. We’ve always got to be on our game and make sure we play well.”- NRL

 

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