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Why Fitzy stayed, Woolford’s strange illness

There's been no shortage of interest in our boys this week.

The nib Newcastle Knights attract plenty of media attention and we've pulled together the best of it in case you missed any of the news.

Here's what our boys got up to this week:

Why Fitzgibbon stayed

Lino: What brought me to the Knights

After bursting onto the NRL scene, rising nib Newcastle Knights backrower Lachlan Fitzgibbon was coming off-contract and attracted a lot of interest around the league.

But the Newcastle local had no intentions of leaving his 'home'.

Over the past two seasons, Fitzgibbon has found a knack for scoring tries, scoring 17 tries in his last 35 games.


Signing a new deal which keeps him at the Club until 2021, Fitzgibbon said the decision was a no-brainer.

"Newcastle has always been home. I had no intention of moving away from home," Fitzgibbon told Exclusive Insight.

"All my family is from up this way, and all my closest mates are from up this way; there is no better place to play footy than Newcastle.

"I think being a local lad, and with family here, it definitely helps."

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A South Newcastle junior, Fitzgibbon knows how passionate Knights fans are.

After years of ups and downs, the 24-year-old said it's time to give back to the supporters.

"Newcastle has a rich culture and they've always be known as a club that stands behind it's players," Fitzgibbon added.


"There is a different aura around the town when you're winning, you know everyone is buzzing when how the football team is going well and conversely when it's not.

"When we do bring success, whether it be in two years, three years, they'll feel a part of that, they've been through the hard times and winning is better when you've been losing for a long time."

Woolford's strange illness

A well-regarded rookie with a strong work ethic, new recruit Zac Woolford was struck down by a weird illness which stopped him from making his first-grade debut last season.

He's the son of Raiders club legend Simon, who captain Canberra for five seasons and played over 230 games for the club.

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The 22-year-old was nominated for under-20s player of the year while at Canberra in 2016 before moving to the Bulldogs for a better crack at playing NRL.


After a good first season playing ISP NSW, Woolford looked certain to fulfil his dream.

That was till he was struck down with an unusual cyst growing on his jaw bone.

"It was bizarre. I found out I had the cyst a week before our first trial last season," Woolford told the Newcastle Herald.

"I was getting ready to play on the Sunshine Coast and the Friday before, I woke up with a really swollen jaw and went and got it scanned and they found a cyst.

"It ate away all of my jaw bone so I had nothing there to protect anything, so it was really susceptible to being broken if I got a knock."