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It will be an exciting start to the 2017 NRL season for nib Newcastle Knights forward Sam Stone.

The 19-year-old, who had an outstanding season with the NYC in 2016, will make his debut when they travel over the ditch to clash with the New Zealand Warriors this Sunday.

“I’m pretty excited but when the game comes around I’ll be pretty nervous,” he said.

“My mum and dad are very proud, my two brothers and mum are coming over to watch and dad will be watching from England.”

Stone believes his transition to first grade won’t be an easy one but some familiar faces will help ease the pressure.

“It’s a very tough competition but having people I’ve played with around me like Brock Lamb that I’ve played with for a long time, will make it a bit more comfortable for me,” he said.

He said the whole team has worked hard over the pre-season and is confident there’ll be an improvement this year.

“The Warriors are a big pack and they’re powerful and for us that is going to be the biggest task to meet them physically,” Stone said.

“I think it will be important we stick to what we’ve practised throughout the pre-season and follow on from our Canberra trial.”