Jacob Saifiti has almost played 50 first grade games for the nib Newcastle Knights but had he bucked to the noise in his head during his first pre-season, he would've never made it.

Currently sidelined with a shoulder injury, the forward revealed how his first pre-season in 2015 with the 20s side almost drove him to giving the game away.

Studying to become a teacher, the local product was struggling to cope with the physical demands of making the jump from local league to the professional environment.

"It was a 20s pre-season and we weren't used to it," Jacob told the Our Town Our Team podcast.


IF YOU'RE READING ON THE APP AND WANT TO LISTEN TO THE PODCAST - CLICK HERE!

"We were used to doing a con (conditioning) session every Tuesday in local club footy but not getting flogged four days a week."

"It was a rude shock. Our first session we did the beep test into another test and into something else. We were living on the Central Coast at the time. I was driving as (my twin brother and teammate) Daniel didn't have his license at the time.

PEARCE TO MAKE FINAL CALL ON NRL INJURY RETURN

'SHE'S THE CUTEST LITTLE THING': PONGA'S CONNECTION WITH YOUNG FAN

"I was driving down and back every day thinking 'do I really want to do this?'. I was honestly contemplating if I wanted to go back with my mates and play local footy.


"I'm glad I stuck it out, obviously, everything worked out pretty well. It was a shock to the body. I wasn't used to getting flogged three times a week and even harder gym sessions."

It was 2015 when the twins were playing 20s before moving into the fulltime squad the following season where they'd go on to make their NRL debut's in the first round of the 2016 season.

Adjusting to an increased workload was challenging physically but it also took a mental toll according to Daniel.


"I would sleep on the car on the way home, it was more this guy (Jacob) driving," Daniel said of the head noise.

Jacob added; "I'd look over and he'd be sleeping like a baby."

"That first year in 20s was pretty tough," Daniel continued.

"Our first NRL pre-season was a rude shock. Mentally as well, getting used to playing with Jarrod Mullen and Jeremy Smith.

"The more experience you get, you realise pre-season is something you have to do."