'No issues' in Raiders' close games

Canberra five-eighth Blake Austin says the Raiders' horror record in tight NRL contests can't be put down to their performance at the end of games.

Blake Austin says Canberra don't have issues in close games after a last-minute round-one NRL loss.

Blake Austin says Canberra don't have issues in close games after a last-minute round-one NRL loss.

Ricky Stuart's team dropped eight games in 2017 by a converted try or less, with Sunday night's two-point defeat to Gold Coast evoking painful memories.

But Austin says an extensive video review on Tuesday focused on incidents earlier in the game, not at the clutch.

"It's important that we don't throw everything out that we've been working on in pre-season - it's only round one," Austin said.

"There were plenty of good things in that game but, unfortunately, we let a couple of errors creep in and we lost control of the possession stat again.

"It's another chance for you guys to write about a close loss, but it's important we really analyse it for what it was and not let the past alter what happened in this game.

"The last five or six minutes wasn't exactly where we lost the match on the weekend. So, when we go over everything with a fine comb, we've got to make sure we get every moment in the game."

Austin played a central role against the Titans, starting the game with Sam Williams in the halves after initially being named on the bench.

It meant Aidan Sezer began on the bench, coming on for an impressive Siliva Havili at hooker after 25 minutes, as the Raiders searched for multiple options to cover Josh Hodgson's injury.

"He (Sezer) was obviously really excited to start in the No.7, but then we went with Sammy for the opening game," Austin said.

"To Aidan's credit, he's worked really hard and he's playing a role (hooker) that's foreign to him, but he went out there and had a crack."

Joe Tapine will miss the Raiders' clash with Newcastle this Sunday night due to a dislocated thumb.

Canberra expected captain Jarrod Croker to play after a heavy knock against the Titans, but he played out the match.

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