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Josh King was happy to be back out on the NRL field for the nib Newcastle Knights this weekend, the 21-year-old getting his first start for the 2017 season against the Gold Coast Titans.

A consistent performance in reserve grade rewarded the Knights forward his promotion to first grade for Round 9. King played 35 minutes and added 23 tackles to his name.

“I was very happy to be back out there, obviously NRL is what I want to be playing,” said King.

“It is disappointing to get the result at the end of the day but I’m happy to be back out there playing.

“A lot different to playing NSW cup, it’s a lot tougher but hopefully just keep on improving and get another shot soon.”

King puts the loss down to inconsistent footy.

“For 40 minutes we were really good and competitive and in the second half we let ourselves go a bit and got a bit complacent,” he said.

“Something we’ve been trying to work on is being an 80-minute team, playing the full game so we’ll go back to the drawing board and keep on working at it.”

The Knights forward believes while the Titans put on a good show, they let them play well.

“In the first half we contained them really well and we played to our strengths and were finishing our sets,” maintained King.

“In the second half we just went away from that a little bit so playing for 80 minutes is something we are not doing at the moment and we really need to improve on fast so we can start winning some games.”

“This week we’ll go in and do our review and then have a couple of tough training sessions and come back bigger and stronger two weeks’ time and take on Canberra (Raiders).”