Canberra young gun Mitch Cornish has helped to steer the Raiders to a 32-20 NRL trial victory over a Melbourne side missing their big three.
Young gun Mitch Cornish is one step closer to securing the halfback spot for Canberra following the Green Machine's 32-20 NRL trial win over Melbourne in sweltering conditions at Griffith in the NSW Riverina.
Cornish, who was dangerous every time he touched the ball, showcased his judicious attacking kicking game and created a try for centre Hayden Hodge following a mazy cross-field run.
Sam Williams was considered Cornish's main rival for the halfback position and, while the returning Raider acquitted himself well, it was Cornish who was the standout.
Barnstorming prop Luke Page also put himself in the frame for a first-grade berth with a brutish display.
The former Gold Coast prop rumbled over the line for a try midway through the second half and constantly scattered Storm defenders with his ferocious hit-ups.
Melbourne were without star trio Cameron Smith, Cooper Cronk and Billy Slater, and struggled for cohesion at times in the oppressive conditions.
New signing Blake Green acquitted himself well in his club debut, combining well with young backline utility Kurt Mann on several occasions.
Back-rower Tim Glasby was the pick of the Storm forwards and gave the Raiders nightmares on the right edge.
Winger Young Tonumaipea notched a first-half double, including a spectacular leaping effort to claim a Ben Hampton kick.
Raiders winger Jordan Rapana was placed on report during the first half for a lifting tackle, but neither team reported any major injuries.