NEWCASTLE, NSW - Exciting full-back Anthony Milford had a hand in three tries in Canberra's 26-20 win over Newcastle Knights at Hunter Stadium in Sunday's NRL clash.
Milford was at his attacking best, making several breaks and helping to lay on tries for Jarrod Croker and Paul Vaughan to give Canberra their first victory of the season in front of a crowd of 14,674. The Knights remain winless.
A short grubber kick from Canberra five-eighth Jack Wighton saw centre Jarrod Croker open the scoring in the seventh minute.
With Croker carrying a corked leg injury into the match, fullback Anthony Milford converted for a 6-0 lead.
Debutant fullback Matt Minto was involved in Newcastle's first try when he delivered a cut out pass to send winger Akuila Uate on a 30 metre run for a 6-4 lead.
Wighton experienced a case of misfortune in a space of two minutes.
The first saw Croker defuse a towering bomb and score only to have the video referees overrule the decision. A minute later, Wighton missed a tackle on Newcastle second-rower Beau Scott who raced 40 metres to score.
Kurt Gidley converted to give the Knights a 10-6 lead after 21 minutes.
The Raiders hit back immediately when Josh McCrone darted out from dummy half to push off Gidley to dive over in the corner for a 10-all scoreline.
Canberra regained the lead five minutes later when Milford stepped inside back-rower Alex McKinnon to race 50 metres downfield to send Croker over for his second try.
Milford converted from in front to give the Raiders a 16-10 lead.
An in-goal collision between Reece Robinson and Milford saw winger James McManus plant the ball down in the 59th minute to leave Newcastle trailing 16-14.
Gidley converted for a 16-all scoreline.
A fine offload in a two man tackle by centre Joey Leilua saw halfback Tyrone Roberts step past prop Brett White to score a 30 metre try to give the Knights a 20-16 lead after 65 minutes.
Three minutes later, the Raiders drew level at 20-all when Paul Vaughan dived over from an inside pass from Croker after a 40 metre break by Milford.
Winger Reece Robinson converted for a 22-20 lead.
Canberra secured victory in the 79th minute when a kick by Milford was spilt by Minto resulting in winger Edrick Lee scoring in the corner.