Moga to apply heat as NRL return nears

Tautau Moga is edging closer to an NRL return.

The centre was impressive in Newcastle’s 16-14 Canterbury Cup NSW win over Blacktown at McDonald Jones stadium last week, in what was his third game back from an ACL injury.

He scored a try and set one up with his return to the NRL potentially just one game away.  

“Tau’s certainly going to put pressure on, there’s no doubt at all,” coach Nathan Brown said on Tuesday.

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“It’s just when he’s ready, that’s the reality of it.

“Is he 80 minutes or two games away? I’m not sure but he’s certainly going to put his hand in that shop window shortly.”

While Moga is nearing an NRL return, Brown said he won’t be changing the backline at this stage.

Edrick Lee has cemented himself on the wing outside Hymel Hunt who has the ability to play centre or on the flank.

It’s a combination which is growing.

Alternatively, Jesse Ramien and Shaun Kenny-Dowall are also developing.

With Moga still get his fitness back, Brown said he’s in no hurry to disrupt the backline.

“Tau’s been back for two games and he’s going to put a huge amount of pressure on, there’s no doubt,” Brown continued.

“He’s in the best shape he’s been at since he’s been at our club. Whether he’s one game short or two games short but there’s no doubt he’s going to put some heat on.

“He’s a quality player when he’s playing well and he showed in the early stages last year for us that he brings a lot to the table and he offers a lot of strike.

“Hymel’s had five games and four pretty solid ones for us. Hymel can play wing as well.

“We’re quite comfortable. He’s contributing well.”