Newcastle Knights v Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs
Date: Friday April 7
Venue: McDonald Jones Stadium
1. Matt Cooper, 2. Mitch Andrews, 3. Brayden Musgrove, 4. Heath Gibbs, 5. Lachlan Farr, 6. Jack Johns, 7. Hayden Loughrey, 8. Cameron King, 9. Tom Starling, 10. Viko Puliuvea, 11. Dylan Clark, 12. Sam McIntyre, 13. Zac Hosking. Interchange: 14. Nash Birch, 15. Will Davies, 16. Jayden Butterfield, 17. Pasami Saulo, 18. Henry Penn, 19. Dean Kouka-Smith, 20. Eddy Tuilotolava, 21. Kye Hopwood, 22. Corey Denniss, 23. Jayden Hocking.
1. Ben Cassell, 2. Alvin Maungaati, 3. Dalton Smith, 4. Morgan Harper, 5. Kiko Manu, 6. Adam Keighran, 7. Michael Doolan, 8. Lopeti Mafi, 9. Joseph Tramontana, 10. Peni Misinale, 11. Jayden Okunbor, 12. Jack Gibbons, 13. Hayden Ashcroft, 14. James Clark, 15. Kayne Kalache, 16. Giordan Patea 17. Elie El-Zakhem, 19. Ofa Finau, 20. Kenny Soumpholphakdy, 21. Fili Havea, 22. Kieran Hayman, 23. Simon Fonua, 24. Brandon Boulmelhem
NYC Newcastle Knights coach Todd Lowrie has named an unchanged starting 17 to take on the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs, rewarding Lachlan Farr a start on the wing.
“Lachlan (Farr) went quite well for us on the weekend,” said Lowrie.
“He came in at wing so he’s taken most of his opportunities and deserves his spot back there on the wing.”
Henry Penn was set to come back this week after injuring his ankle in Round 1 but his return has been delayed.
“Henry Penn was back on the bench but at training he hurt his ankle and has been ruled out again unfortunately, he’ll get some scans,” explained Lowrie.
The Under 20s coach said between now and game day there could be a few changes but nothing too dramatic.
“I have been reasonably happy the last two weeks, the score line certainly hasn’t gone our way and we’re working hard at training to fix some things we’ve identified that we know we need to fix,” Lowrie added.
“The guys who are there are doing a pretty good job, working really hard and doing some things that we’ve been working on.”
Lowrie hopes one aspect of their game to stay this week will be their strong start as shown against the Cronulla Sharks in round five.
“We actually started well which is an area that we haven’t been doing,” he said.
“We’ve been starting quite poor so to start well on the weekend was good.
“I thought five minutes before and after halftime really hurt us on the weekend and that’s generally an area where we’ve been quite strong.”
The NYC coach said he will again be relying on some of his key performers.
“Matt Cooper has been really good for us and Cameron King, one of our front rowers, has been doing very well,” commented Lowrie.
“He played a few games for us last year and he’s really working hard at training and improved himself a lot.
“He got the Players’ Player on the weekend and scored a couple of tries so he’s working really hard.
“Sam McIntyre is also doing really well for us on the edge, former winger whose playing second row for us and he’s doing a really good job.”
Where it will be won
“Sounds like a bit of a broken record but there’s some things we really need to fix up, one is holding the ball and having more respect for the ball,” said Lowrie.
The Under 20s coach believes his players need to get through more of their sets and maintain strong defensive combinations.
“If we can fix those up then we’ll be well on the way to getting a win,” explained Lowrie.
“We are doing a lot of little things right consistently which is good for a coach to see but we’ve just got to look at finishing touches on everything and stop putting ourselves under so much pressure.”
Catch the NYC team’s clash with the Bulldogs on Friday at McDonald Jones Stadium, kick-off is at 3.45pm.