Evolving the attack: Pearce on KP's switch and what Meaney brings

Mitchell Pearce has confirmed Kalyn Ponga will slot into five-eighth this Saturday, joining him in the halves for the nib Newcastle Knights' clash with Penrith.

It's a role many believe Ponga will excel in with his ball playing and ability to get around defenders a great strength of his game.

According to Pearce, the livewire has the ability to play in the halves at any level but stopped short of backing him to make a permanent move from fullback.

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"There's no doubt the role he plays is a ball player," Pearce said.

"Some type of fullbacks in the game are runners and support players that could never play six (but) he's a player that can play six and he's playing that tomorrow (Saturday).

"He could play at all levels at six, I reckon. Out of respect to Kalyn and where he's at, the hot property he is, I'm sure the Club will let him play where he wants.

"... he's one of the best young players to come through the game.


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"He's had an unbelievable season and at times, doing it behind a beaten pack. No one is doubting his ability."

The Ponga switch should see Nick Meaney return to the first-grade side for his third game in first grade.

A runner with speed to burn, Meaney is two for two in his NRL career and Pearce is keen to see what the young creative can conjure up.

"We have to evolve some things in attack," Pearce said.


"I think Nick Meaney gives us a bit more speed and adlib footy from the back.

"He gives us another option. He's a great runner of the ball."

So, what can the fans expect to see from their new-look spine?

"I'd like to think we can play some good footy," he said.

"It's been challenging over the last month or so and most of the season for myself, not being able to be out there and build combinations.


"Connor and Kalyn haven't trained too much with his injury.

"We had a couple of good sessions this week.

"I have no doubt we'll connect well, it's just a matter of as a team, do the whole cycle well and that will give us good opportunities."