It will be a proud moment for Herman Ese'ese on Friday.

The 23-year-old will run on to the field to play his 50th NRL match against the Wests Tigers on home turf.

A milestone he will relish.


"It's a proud moment for myself and my family, it has come around quick, but I am really grateful, and I can't wait to get out there with the boys," Ese'ese said.

The Knights forward is also looking forward to coming up against childhood hero and Kiwi international Benji Marshall.

"Every kid dreamt of being Benji back in the days and I was fortunate enough to play alongside him at the Broncos," he added.

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"I know what he brings to the team, the energy he brings, and I'm definitely expecting that this weekend."

Two points above the Knights on the ladder, the Tigers hopes of finals football is very much alive.


Ese'ese admits their opponents will be desperate to bag the win but also believes there's still hope to see the red and blue surge deeper into September.

"If we win our next three or four games, just got to hope the other teams above us lose so we're still keeping the faith, and still keeping a positive attitude," explained Ese'ese.

"It's not going to get any easier (with the draw they're facing) and it's getting to that time of the season where everyone will put more effort in and go for a top eight spot.


"We're not really in a great spot on the ladder so we've just got to pray and hope we get the result in the next five games, so we'll be putting everything into it."

With an aggressive forward pack and solid outside back structure, the Knights enforcer knows the Tigers won't be any easy feat.

Following last week's disappointing loss, Newcastle's focus now, is to improve their own game.

"We're just going to do video on them and focus on us this weekend," said Ese'ese.

"We need to tidy up the areas that we need to improve on, come out this week and hopefully get the win in front of a home crowd."


Taking a bit of inspiration from last time the two teams met in a thrilling victory in the dying seconds.

"It was a good game for us playing in Tamworth, we lost Mitchell Pearce in that game, but it is good to have him back and they'll probably have a similar line-up, so we know what to expect, we'll go out there and focus on us and hopefully do a good job," he said.