The nib Newcastle Knights have almost four months of pre-season training behind them as they prepare for a trial match against the Canberra Raiders in Queanbeyan, and coach Nathan Brown says he’s looking for the younger players in the squad to demonstrate how much they’ve improved.
“I’m pretty comfortable that all of the young blokes have progressed really well, but obviously the proof will be in the playing,” Brown said in a press conference on Wednesday morning.
“We’d love to see all of our young blokes that played last year to be physically better.”
With the likes of Dylan Phythian, Brock Lamb and Daniel Saifiti starting the match, Brown is aware of how big the challenge will be against an impressive Raiders side.
“It’s going to be a great test in Canberra this weekend, and I’m sure in the first 40 minutes their better players will come out hard,” he said.
“We’re playing not only a big physical side, but we’re also playing some really good outside backs.
“Everyone’s going to get a test, and it’s going to be a physical test.”
On top of the youngsters, Brown is keen to see how the Club’s new recruits perform.
Jamie Buhrer, Ken Sio and Josh Starling are all new additions, and all three are starting.
“We want the new additions to have a good influence on the team,” the coach explained.
“We’re playing a Raiders side that some people are tipping to win the comp.”
The Knights take on the Raiders at Seiffert Oval on Saturday night and the match will be streamed live at newcastleknights.com.au from 6.30pm.