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Man with a plan: Brown ready for Origin week

Origin players or not… Nathan Brown has a plan.

Kalyn Ponga and David Klemmer are expected to star in Wednesday night's State of Origin clash.

That means a possibility they won’t be available for Friday’s clash against the Rabbitohs.

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The Newcastle Knights coach is thinking long term and won’t risk his key playmakers.

“We’re prepared for them not to play,” Brown said.

“We’ve got a plan without them and there’s a long-term approach to think about as well.

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“I’m sure they want to play but we’ll see how they are on Thursday evening when we get to Sydney.

“It’s expecting a lot.”

Also, with Danny Levi injured and the hooker role up for grabs, there’s potential for plenty of position switches.

But Brown's got that covered.

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“More than likely Connor will slot in to hooker with Danny’s injury,” he confirmed.

“We’ve got a few options to look at in fullback.

“Kurt Mann can play there, Edrick Lee has played there before.

“We’ve got a few options, but we’ll see how that unfolds as the week goes.

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“Sione could move out as well (centres).”

Not to forget a Tautau Moga come back could be on the cards.

The Knights centre quietly plugging away in Canterbury Cup.

“I thought Tau was very good on the weekend, he played on the wing, we wanted to see him play there,” Brown added.

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“He’s starting to gain his confidence and fitness.

“Whether he is ready to go or whether he needs a game or two, still haven’t had that chat.

“His game in Canterbury Cup on the weekend certainly looked confident when he was carrying the ball.”

Putting in the hard yards in Canterbury Cup is also Jamie Buhrer.

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The veteran forward a likely selection for this week.

“Jamie Buhrer will come on the bench for sure,” Brown said.

“His last two or three Canterbury Cup games have been really good and he’s always keen and hungry.

“Regardless of the injury to Danny, he probably deserves another shot.”