The Newcastle Knights are determined to redeem their 36-16 loss to the Manly Sea Eagles when they come up against the Canterbury-Banktown Bulldogs this Saturday for Women in League Round.
“It wasn’t up to the standards where we need to be,” co-captain Trent Hodkinson said about Sunday’s game.
“Although we got a couple of points in the second half, it’s still not good enough.
“We need to improve this week against the Dogs.”
The team will ensure it makes improvements to its defensive game.
“Defensively we were quite poor and weren’t controlling the ruck,” Hodkinson added.
“We have to tidy things up through the middle as the Bulldogs pack is such a big pack and they have been well known for it.
“We know what their strengths are and that’s their big boys up the middle.
“First and foremost we will focus on our ruck defence and do our best there and things will come off the back of that.”
The Knights have churned through a high number of players this season, a factor Hodkinson believes has contributed to the side’s struggle to find form.
“It’s always tough when you are using more players than other teams,” he said.
“We have used a hell of a lot more than other teams and it’s harder to build combinations.
“It’s disappointing, but that’s the kind of year we’ve had so far.
“It’s been up and down… but I’m still enjoying my footy, going to training and working hard with the boys.”
Saturday’s game kicks off the first of four games in a row at home.
“We have a few late home games, which is nice to finish the season off,” Hodkinson said.
“We need to turn it around for our home fans this week.
“It is frustrating and disappointing, but we have five games to go and have the majority of them at home, so we can turn it around in the back end of the season which will be nice.
“We have to take it week by week as the old cliché says.
“Where we are at, we need to focus on the little things and improve in those ways.
“There is a lot of young talent here and the more experience they get then the better they will be for it.”
The Knights toast Women in League in Round 22 with great giveaways at the game on Saturday. Purchase your match tickets now.