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The next group of potential Newcastle Knights Red Energy Cheerleaders danced and shimmied their way through auditions at McDonald Jones Stadium on Tuesday evening.

This year saw a record 44 new applicants from across the region, who were put through their paces with difficult choreography, flexibility skills and showing they’ve got the right personality for the job.

“We were mainly looking for girls with personality and the knowledge to go with that,” said cheerleading Director Alex Tsambos.

“When I came on board, we changed the role from just a typical cheerleader as what it is stereotyped to be, to more of an ambassador, so with that comes good communication, confidence, enthusiasm and knowledge of the sport you’re in and the brand you represent.”

Last year’s captain Therese has been with the red and blue cheerleading group for nine years and said it’s been an incredible experience.

“It has been the best nine years of dancing and game days are just incredible,” added Therese.

“The work and effort you put in to dancing leading up to the games is so worth it on the field when you are in front of everyone doing what you love.

“It is great meeting everyone, meeting fans, getting to work promotional gigs all over Newcastle… just really incredible people and very rewarding.”

And she didn’t mind the added competition for spots this year.

“It is a very healthy competition and it’s good, it makes you want to push harder, kick higher and be a better dancer,” smiled Therese.

On game days it’s not just about dancing on the field but interacting with Knights Members and fans.

Alex said, “The girls get out in the Fan Zone and interact with the fans… they go outside and do handouts of flags, or flyers and they’ll really be involved in everything, while they move around the stadium.

“They do promotional on field with Red Energy little kickers and they participate in a number of activities on the day.

“While at game time the girls are on field, they’ll do the play run outs and they’ll go to the sideline.”

22 will be selected for the final squad which you can catch at all home games for the 2018 season.