Competition - ISP. Round - Round 16. Teams - Illawarra v Newcastle Knights. Date - 25th of June 2017. Venue - Jubilee Oval

Meaney and Hughes a strong attacking duo

Nick Meaney and Tom Hughes continue to forge a menacing fullback and winger partnership for the Reserve Grade Newcastle Knights.

The duo was in fine form on the weekend in the ISP side's thrilling 32-20 win against Illawarra.

A hat-trick from Hughes helped the Knights get over the line at Kogarah while Meaney executed several precision passes to guide his teammates to the line.

“I can’t complain, all the boys made it pretty easy for me and all I had to do was put it over the line,” laughed winger Tom Hughes.

“Nick Meaney almost got the three tries for me, he was doing all the work.”

Fullback Meaney was equally humble.

“It just makes my job easier when those boys are calling for the ball and I can hear their voice loud and clear,” he said.

“All I have to do is to give it to them and they do the rest.”

A factor that clearly paid dividends was the welcome back of several players from injury in Round 16.

“We had a few of the first grade boys back like Stocky (Jack Stockwell) and they helped us drive it through the middle, making it easy for us out on the edge,” explained Hughes.

Utility Chanel Mata’utia was back following a knee injury and found the line on one occasion, while Jack Cogger also made his return to Reserve Grade.

“Coggs brings a lot of experience to the team even though he is young and it seems like he has been around for 20 years,” admitted Meaney.

“He definitely brings a lot of leadership and vision to the team, brings a lot of firepower, is really good on his feet and strong as well so it was good to have those guys back and have the win.”

The Knights fullback thinks Sunday’s victory shows the ISP side are starting to gel well together.

“We had a rough period in a few previous games and hopefully we start to work on the back of this, string a few wins together and maybe get into the finals,.

The pair agree the win will provide motivation to kick start the last half of their season for a possible berth in the finals.

“We want to try and string a few wins together,” said Hughes.

“We have been a bit inconsistent the last two months so if we can get a roll on from this, it will be good to get us into the finals.”