Competition - Intrust Cup - Newcastle Knights v Illawarra Cutters - Saturday 24 June 2016, Hunter Stadium Broadmeadow NSW - Photographer Shane Myers © nrlphotos.com

In the Sheds: Reserve Grade Round 16

The Reserve Grade Newcastle Knights were over run by the Illawarra Cutters 40-24 at Hunter Stadium in a match that slid away after half time.

“I thought we started really well and had good energy,” coach Matt Lantry said in the sheds following the game.

“It probably shows where we are a little bit as a team and don’t have the ability to build pressure at the moment.

“We gave up some soft tries in the first half and a disappointing one right on half time.

“We did some good things, we just missed too many opportunities.

“At the moment for every good thing we are doing, we are compounding it with two or three poor things.

“Those poor things are not completing sets when coming out of your own half and giving up cheap possession.”

The Knights have struggled to find consistent form this season, with Lantry hoping for his players to learn important lessons from tough losses.

“At the moment we need the playing squad in and around our NSW Cup squad to really ensure they are learning from those errors consistently and not dishing up the same stuff week in week out,” he said.

He believes the presence of experienced heads like Akuila Uate benefits the young side.

“Akuila I thought was one of our better players today and had some really nice touches and good involvement in the game,” he said.

“Around the young guys it’s certainly of benefit.

“We just need a few more blokes who can go with him and compete as he does week in week out. “

Meanwhile Knights' fullback Bryce Donovan admitted the side failed to make the most of opportunities when they arose.

“We were shooting ourselves in the foot a bit,” he said.

“We got within four and had too many errors.

“They are a big physical side and don’t like to give you much room in defence. I thought we handled it pretty well for most of the game. There were just little areas we slackened off a bit and they got over the top.

 “All the boys really bought in and we were trying to get through it together, but we just somehow we would give away a penalty and would let all the pressure off."