The Raiders won the game 20-19, but Stuart was still angry at the post-game press conference. Croker, who will make his 300th appearance for the team next week, was rested so he could play the milestone game on home soil. Stuart said he made the right decision for the fans and took a risk with his leadership that paid off.
Stuart then took aim at his critics, calling them ‘muppets’ who don’t understand leadership. He said he was prepared to take the risk and was open and honest about the decision to rest Croker, even though he may have been wrong to do so. Croker will become just the second Raiders player to reach 300 games and the first to do so in the nation’s capital after relative Jason Croker brought up the triple-century feat against the Broncos at Suncorp Stadium in 2006.
Stuart also acknowledged the significance of Croker’s impending personal milestone and said it will be one of the biggest events in Canberra Raiders‘ history.
Stuart has been a successful coach, winning a premiership with the Roosters in 2002, but since then, silverware has eluded him. He guided the Raiders to the 2019 decider, but lost to the Roosters. Despite the loss, Stuart is determined to lead the Raiders to success and believes in taking risks to achieve his goals.