It was a season that promised so much, Charles Dickens would've been licking his lips. But in the end it only delivered disappointment and controversy for the Canberra Raiders - although there were a few lime green shoots to provide some hope for the future. Those expectations suffered a near-fatal blow with a mid-season slump that saw the Green Machine win just two of 11 games to leave them 13th on the NRL ladder and longshots to make the eight. That was largely due to a series of second-half fadeouts, with the Raiders generally looking good after 20 minutes before struggling for the remaining 60. They led at half-time in six of their 14 losses - four of those they led by 12 points or more.