Roosters put sorry Raiders to sword in NRL

Canberra's sorry NRL season is all but over after the Sydney Roosters effectively killed off their NRL finals hopes and kept their own top-four chances alive with a 40-16 win in Mackay.

In a result that had serious implications for six teams, Roosters centre Adam Keighran bagged a hat-trick of tries and James Tedesco and Drew Hutchison also starred on Thursday night.

The Raiders' loss means Gold Coast can still make the finals in eighth spot if Cronulla fall to Melbourne on Friday and the Titans beat the Warriors on Sunday, otherwise the Sharks will finish eighth.

After such high hopes at the start of the season, Canberra would need something miraculous - Cronulla to be flogged by a near-record margin of 74 points or more by the Storm plus the Titans to lose to the Warriors - if they were still to scrape into eighth spot.

Meanwhile the injury-ravaged Roosters are now provisionally in fourth, meaning Manly need to beat North Queensland on Saturday night if they are to overtake them and earn a second chance in the finals.

Canberra looked up for Thursday night's contest when Elliott Whitehead and Josh Papalii crashed over early, before it all fell apart for the Raiders from 12-6 up.

They had little luck in the first half, with Charne-Nicoll Klokstad penalised for contacting Matt Ikuvalu's head as he scored one try and Roosters half Lachlan Lam dropping the ball in the lead up to another.

But even so the Raiders only had themselves to blame in a fitting end to a disappointing season.

They missed 39 tackles and completed at just 59 per cent, while Semi Valemei had a shocker on the left wing after being a late call up for Sebastian Kris.

Valemei dropped a Hutchison kick into the arms of Keighran for his first try, giving the Roosters a lead they never looked like relinquishing.

James Tedesco injected himself after the break, having already set up the Roosters' first try of the night through Ikuvalu.

The fullback busted through the middle before Keighran scored from the next play.

Keighran then had his third try after he put Tedesco into a hole and backed up to take a great return pass before crashed into an upright and putting the ball down, briefly injuring himself in the process.

Angus Crichton, Ben Marschke and Lachlan Lam also bagged tries for the Roosters, while Hutchison had his best night in the No.6 jersey and Siosiua Taukeiaho was immense up front.

Canberra's demise comes despite them entering the season as one of the favourites for the title, before a string of dramas coincided with just two wins in 11 games between April and early July.

Halfback George Williams was released back to England in an ugly split, while rumours surrounded Josh Hodgson's future and Curtis Scott was sacked by the club for an off-field incident.