Ponga’s verdict on goal kicking in 2019

Kalyn Ponga will start next year as the nib Newcastle Knights' first-choice goal-kicker.

While he started last season in the role, he handed over the duties to a combination of

Having handed over the duties Ken Sio, Nick Meaney and Brock Lamb.

The Knights made just 69.7% of their goal attempts.

But the 20-year-old said he'll relish the chance to be the main goal kicker in 2019.


"I want to do that, yeah, it's something I want to work on," Ponga said.

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"I'll have an opportunity to actually work on it in the pre-season and take a sort of role there and ownership role there.

"My ankle will be sweet, so yeah, I want to be the goal kicker."


Ponga had a breakout season in 2018 but it ended prematurely due to an ankle injury.

Recovering from off-season surgery, Ponga returned to full-time training this week and is working towards being 100 per cent in the New Year.

"I'm back full-time training now which is good. This week is my first full week," Ponga added.

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"It's still a little bit annoying but that's a part of rehab.

"I'm pretty happy with it."


Having now returned to the training paddock, working on combinations with potential halves partner Mitchell Pearce is starting to come to fruition.

With the new season just around the corner, Ponga has labelled the team's defence as an area of focus during training.

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"We've had a little bit of time, obviously I haven't been training to much but the little bit of time that we've had felt pretty good," Ponga said.


"We've just sort of got to build on what we did last year.

"I think in attack not much will change, it's just learning what each other does and how each other sort of moves.

"But at the end of the day our focus is defence so that's what we're looking at the pre-season."