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Frustrated Ricky Stuart vents over Raiders' high penalty count in loss to Bunnies

Frustrated Canberra coach Ricky Stuart, contemplating a fourth NRL defeat in a row, admits his side only had themselves to blame for their 34-20 loss to South Sydney.

Canberra coach Ricky Stuart. Source: Photosport

A lopsided 8-1 penalty count against the Raiders in Thursday's encounter also drew the ire of Stuart, who said he intended to follow up with the referees' office to highlight his concerns.

Stuart said while he was happy with a "big part" of Canberra's performance at GIO Stadium, his struggling team gave away too many "cheap" points.

"We can't keep giving away 12 to 18 points a game, that's what we keep doing," said Stuart, highlighting another poor second half performance by the Green Machine.

"We've only got ourselves to blame, no one else."

But as he reflected on the 8-1 penalty count, he added: "This has been happening a lot this year to us.

"I look like the whinger, which I don't really give a sh*t about being labelled the whinger, but when you've got a game out there where it's 8-1 in penalties, I just think that probably needs a discussion."

Stuart said his concern about refereeing was not being "disrespectful" towards Souths, who were playing "good footy".

In-form Canberra five-eighth Jack Wighton conceded it was another disappointing result, especially after four losses in the trot, which has not happened to the club since August 2018.

"We are hurting ourselves in a lot of ways. Four in a row - you [need] to keep on going. What are you going to do?" Wighton said.

"It hurts. Everyone's feeling it [but] there's no use kicking stones."

He said the team needed to get back "on the horse and go again".

The Raiders managed to maintain their cool early in the match after halfback George Williams was a late withdrawal due to a hamstring injury suffered during the warm up.

The injury forced Jordan Rapana to take on kicking duties and other changes to the line-up including Elliot Whitehead playing five-eighth.

Stuart said: "I thought they overcame that really well, the way they played."

He added that it had been "anyone's game" at halftime and he applauded the team's second-half effort despite falling short at the end.