NYC Preview: Round 23

NYC Newcastle Knights v Penrith Panthers
Date: Sunday August 14
Venue: Hunter Stadium 
Kick off: 11.40am
TICKETS

NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS

1. Nick Meaney, 2. Kainoa Gudgeons, 3. Brayden Musgrove, 4. Heath Gibbs, 5 . Matthew Soper-Lawler, 6. Nick Newman, 7. Jack Cogger, 8. Tyrone Amey, 9. Tom Starling, 10. Jayden Butterfield, 11. Zac Hosking, 12. Sam Stone, 13. Braden Robson. Interchange: 14. Joe Morris, 16. Cameron King, 17. Eddy Tuilotolava, 18. Jamayne Taunoa-Brown. 

PENRITH PANTHERS

1. Daniel Brown, 2. Jake Ennis, 3. Caleb Aekins, 4. Braidon Burns, 5. Christian Crichton
6. Tyrone May (c), 7. Jarome Luai, 8. Thomson Tuigamala, 9. Wayde Egan, 10. Dylan Fuad, 11. Reed Izzard, 12. Kaide Ellis, 13. Liam Martin. Interchange: 14. Jack Nelson, 15. Mitch Kenny, 16. Carl Winterstein, 17. Dean Blore, 19. Billy Burns.

Match Analysis:

The NYC Newcastle Knights look to dig deep defensively when they meet the first placed Penrith Panthers at Hunter Stadium on Sunday.

Saturday’s loss to the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs last weekend has spurred on the Knights to shore up their defensive efforts. 

“We have done a bit more on our defence,” NYC coach Todd Lowrie said.

“I think it’s also about executing our plays.

“We create enough opportunities, we’re just not taking advantage of.

“We will need to be more aggressive.”

The young Knights remain undaunted by the fact they’ll be facing up to their top of the table opponent and have chosen to use the challenge as motivation.

“We certainly have a lot more to play for than they do, we are still within reach of the finals,” he said.

“We probably need to win the rest of our games.

“What better way to start than against the top of the table team.

“They are certainly beatable and from what we have had a look at, we can definitely get them, but we are going to have to be good.”

In a challenging game against the Bulldogs in Round 23, fullback Nick Meaney contributed a strong effort gaining 175 metres, making two line breaks and two try assists.

“Nick Meaney has been really good for us,” he said. 

Lowrie also acknowledged the hard work and consistency of Tom Starling and Jayden Butterfield.

“They have been three guys who have been performing the best over the last few weeks,” he said.

Where it will be won:

Defence.

“We are going to have to be aggressive defensively and then ask them some questions in attack,” he said.

“We are going to have to throw the ball around a bit."

The Knights also hope to gain added inspiration from playing on home turf.

“I will speak to the boys about playing at home and having that pride in Newcastle," he said. 

“I’ll be wanting them to play with a bit of pride and a bit of energy and playing before first grade this week, they will have a bigger crowd their games.” 

The Knights will celebrate James McManus' career this Sunday, with the flying Scotsman doing one final lap to farewell the fans before the NRL match kicks off at Hunter Stadium.

NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS v PENRITH PANTHERS

Date: Sunday August 14
Gates open: 11.30am
Kick-off: 2.00pm
Venue: Hunter Stadium
TICKETS HERE