The Raiders outscored the Tigers 56-10 in a nine-try rout to cement their place in the Finals, with Hudson Young starring for the Green Machine.
The Raiders were in fine form with nine tries for Matthew Timoko, Sebastian Kris, Nick Cotric, Jordan Rapana, Xavier Savage, Jamal Fogarty, Josh Papalii and a brace for Hudson Young.
MATCH CENTRE: Tigers vs Raiders teams, SuperCoach scores, videos, updates
Stream every game from every round of the 2022 NRL Telstra Premiership season live and ad-free during play on Kayo. New to Kayo? Start your free trial now >
LISTEN TO THE LATEST EPISODE OF THE FOX LEAGUE PODCAST WITH SPECIAL GUEST SCOTT SATTLER
Matthew Timoko jumped on a grubber from Jamal Fogarty after a horror rebound slipped past Brent Naden to give the Raiders a 6-0 lead.
Sebastian Kris completed a brilliant long-range try to extend the Raiders’ lead to 12-0.
The Raiders stunned the Tigers when Nick Cotric dove into the corner for their third down in seven minutes.
Jordan Rapana completed another long range effort for the Raiders to shake up the Tigers.
Hudson Young got in on the fun trying to make it 30-0 in the first half hour.
The carnage continues with Xavier Savage scoring a brilliant kick from Matt Frawley to make it 36-0.
Zac Woolford drilled through to put Jamal Fogarty out for three straight tries at kick-off.
“It’s embarrassing,” Warren Smith said.
Daine Laurie finally put the Tigers on the board with a brilliant try to end the Raiders’ seven-straight try.
The Tigers went on back-to-back tries when Ken Maumalo produced an excellent finish in the corner to cut the lead to 32.
Young scored his brace with a brilliant solo run to stop the Tigers’ comeback.
Josh Papalii burst in from close range to push back the lead to 44 points.
Zane Musgrove was sent to the trash allowing Jordan Rapana to score a penalty to put the icing on the cake for the Raiders’ run to the final.
Here are the main takeaways from the game.
PATHETIC TIGERS IMPLOSE IN FIRST HALF NO SHOW
The Tigers were just six points away from conceding the most first-half points in NRL history in a defensive display of horror.
The Tigers trailed 42-0 at halftime, with the Raiders going seven unanswered tries in the first half.
Corey Parker couldn’t believe the Tigers could produce this defensive performance two weeks after being blown away by the Roosters.
“It was raining tries for the Raiders,” Parker said.
“They were going at one point per minute. Seven tries in the first half for the Raiders.
“The goal line defense just wasn’t there for the Tigers.
“Diabolical, for their last game at home, I mean the fans came, they came to see a little performance and 42-0 at half time, it’s absolutely pathetic.
“It’s embarrassing, 72-6 just a few weeks ago, last game at home and they show up and let everyone down in that shirt.”
Michael Ennis thinks the Tigers are guilty of following the steps in trying to reach the end of the season.
“It was one-way traffic,” Ennis said.
“The Raiders were going wild. The Tigers just didn’t show up at home and they had an absolute cut.
“Not only is the first half embarrassing, but the club at the moment, in what they’re up to in the competition, is embarrassing.
“They can’t get to the offseason fast enough.”
Braith Anasta was at a loss for words after witnessing the Tigers car crash in the first half.
“It was an absolute cricket score at Leichhardt,” Anasta said.
“The Wests Tigers, pathetic, the Canberra Raiders, on fire, what can I say, I’m almost speechless.”
Greg Alexander wondered what interim coach Brett Kimmorley would have said to his players after a lackluster first-half performance.
“There were a lot of highs for the Raiders, but the lows were definitely more than that in terms of what the Tigers offered defensively,” Alexander said.
“It’s just not good enough. I wonder what Brett Kimmorley said to them at halftime.
“I wouldn’t have said anything. I would have stayed away from the sheds if I was him.
RAIDERS PRODUCE TWO-STAR MINUS TEAM EFFORT
The Broncos gave Ricky Stuart the luxury of resting two of his best players in Jack Wighton and Elliott Whitehead, but they were barely missed in a team-wide clinical display.
The Raiders had eight different try scorers and six players with one try assist each in a true team effort.
Michael Ennis thinks the Raiders have shown how their team has the skills to take advantage of the Tigers’ deplorable defensive style.
“They did a really good job the Raiders,” Ennis said.
“As bad as the Tigers were some of the skills and tries the Raiders scored were incredible.”
Matty Johns believes the Raiders are one of the in-form teams to come to the Finals and can make a deep run in the Finals.
“It was 42-0 at halftime,” Johns said.
“It was just one-way traffic.
“I’ll tell you what the Raiders will give a little nerve in the final.”
Bryan Fletcher was impressed the Raiders didn’t miss a thing without their two stars.
“They did it without two of their senior players in Elliott Whitehead and Jack Wighton,” Fletcher said.
“They were excellent. But saying the Tigers midfielder just didn’t show up until the second half.
YOUNG PROVIDES RAIDERS WITH A POINT OF DIFFERENCE
Hudson Young is one of the NRL’s most improved players and offers the Raiders a point difference heading into the final.
Young had just 57 yards of running, but he produced nine tackle jumps, one offload, two line jumps, one line jump assist and two tries.
The Raiders back-rower is a unique talent and has shown he can do it all on the football field against the Tigers.
The Raiders have a big pack of forwards and have built their success in recent seasons on their power play.
But the club struggled to replace John Bateman in the bottom tier until Young emerged as a true superstar this season.
Ricky Stuart has always been a big fan of Young and knew he would reach those heights one day and deserves a lot of credit for persisting with the youngster.
Young will give the Raiders an x-factor in their attacking pack in the Finals, which will be vital against the Storm defence.
The Wests Tigers host the Canberra Raiders in the final game of the regular season at Leichhardt Oval.
Ken Maumalo (groin) is back on the wing for the Tigers, while Luke Garner was named center on his return from a head shot.
Captain James Tamou will return from a one-game suspension in what could be his last game in the NRL.
For the Raiders, Nick Cotric returns from a groin injury.
Jack Wighton and Elliott Whitehead were rested, with the captain named 18th man.
Matt Frawley comes in at five-eights, with Corey Harawira-Naera entering the back row and Albert Hopoate joining the bench.
The Raiders can seal a top-eight spot in style with a win, capping a remarkable second half of the season, while the Tigers will be looking to spoil the party in their spiritual home.
Get all the latest NRL news, highlights and analysis straight to your inbox with Fox Sports Sportmail. Register now!!
RELIVE THE ACTION IN OUR BLOG BELOW. DO NOT YOU SEE IT ? CLICK HERE.