Sione Mata’utia was pleased to take the field for the first time in 2016 on Saturday.
After carrying a one-match suspension from last season, which ruled him out of Round 1, Mata’utia returned to the field as a member of the Knights’ NYC team against the South Sydney Rabbitohs at ANZ Stadium.
While the young Knights were defeated 28-14, the 19-year-old’s NRL experience was on show with him scoring a try and setting up another during the first half.
“It was a lot of fun and a good first hit out,” he said.
“I served my suspension last week and am working my way through the grades this week.
“I think the speed was still the same as NRL, it’s pretty fast. I think the physicality and quality of football is a bit different.
“It was a lot of fun and still a tough challenge for me.”
Sione played 40 minutes of the NYC match before being rested to prepare for the possibility of playing NRL later in the afternoon.
“It was a bit frustrating. I knew the boys could do it, we just struggled to have a good start again,” he said about the Knights’ first grade loss to the Rabbitohs.
“There’s always next week and we can look forward to getting better during the week."
“I can’t wait to get out there and hopefully do my part to help out the team,” he said.
“We can accept what happened today, do our video and train hard again.”
After being on the road for the opening two rounds of the season, The Knights look forward to playing on home turf in front of the Club’s passionate Members and supporters at Hunter Stadium.
“It’s good to have a home game this week after a loss. Hopefully we can put one on for the home crowd and get a win over the Raiders," he said.
“It’s always good to be back home, the crowd is crazy and always backing us, so it’s good to have them pushing us.
“We have to move on from what happened today and learn from our mistakes and hopefully get back in that winning circle."