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Rugby Wests Tigers lose to Canberra Raiders

Victory would have secured eighth position for Wests Tigers, but they were on the receiving end of a thrashing from Canberra Radiers.

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Wests Tigers were denied a place in the NRL Finals by a 52-10 thumping from Canberra Raiders, whose win ensured home-field advantage for their qualifying final against Cronulla Sharks.

The Tigers needed a win to move above Gold Coast Titans and into eighth position, but the Raiders ran in nine tries to take the two points needed to leapfrog the Sharks and secure second place.

However, there will be concerns for Canberra coach Ricky Stuart with Jordan Rapana leaving the pitch late on and Jarrod Croker struggling with a thigh injury, while Jack Wighton's shoulder charge could result in repercussions.

The Raiders started in scintillating fashion, Croker opening the scoring inside 10 minutes before Joey Leilua produced a moment of sensational skill to latch onto a loose ball and send a behind-the-back pass around Josh Addo-Carr for Rapana to cross.

A double from Josh Papalii helped Canberra to a 30-4 lead at half-time, and, although Tim Grant powered over early in the second half, there was to be no fightback from the Tigers, who bid farewell to captain Robbie Farah during the interval.

Leilua touched down before Rapana grabbed his second, with Joseph Tapine and Sam Williams boosting the score in the closing stages.

Penrith Panthers sealed sixth with a strong first-half display securing a 36-6 victory over Manly Sea Eagles at Pepper Stadium.

Five of the Panthers' six tries came in the opening period, with Josh Mansour running in two and Dallin Watene Zelezniak rounding off a brilliant move spanning the length of the field in the 23rd minute.

Penrith's victory sent them above Canterbury Bulldogs, who they will entertain in the elimination finals.

Parramatta Eels ended a frustrating campaign in fine fashion by beating New Zealand Warriors 40-18 in rain-soaked Auckland.

Bevan French scored a hat-trick for the second successive match as the Eels finish the season knowing the 12-point deduction for salary cap breaches cost them a place in the top eight.

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