Brown: Starting side set for another shake-up

Nathan Brown has revealed there’s more changes coming.

While he initially named Herman Ese’ese and Josh King on the bench for Saturday’s game against the Warriors at McDonald Jones Stadium, the starting line-up will be shaken up.

“Herman’s getting his first start for the year and like most players, Herman likes to start,” Brown said.

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“Kingy’s getting his first start for the year, if you ask Kingy they’re both happy to come off the bench and do what’s right for the team but most players do like to start footy games.

“Most players like to start games. Those two get to start this week.”

King’s promotion will see Jacob Saifiti join the bench.  

While Saifiti was named in the No.10 jersey usually occupied by his twin brother Daniel, the Knights will be calling on the big man to add impact when injected into the game.

When quizzed about Saifiti’s fitness, Brown is confident the big unit is ready for his first game in the NRL this season.

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“If you’d asked me a month ago, I’d say no,” he said when asked if Saifiti was ready.

“Not because he wasn’t playing ok, he had periods where he was good and dying at periods too.

“His last two games have been his best. He played the whole half of reserve grade last week and was very competent. That tells me he’s ready to go.

“We’d be expecting Jake to come off the bench tomorrow and build on what hopefully will be a good start to the game.”

Missing Daniel Saifiti, Mitchell Pearce and David Klemmer to NSW Origin duties, Tim Glasby to Queensland and Edrick Lee (arm) and Kalyn Ponga (ankle) to injury, Brown still expects the team to compete.

“We’re playing a Warriors side pretty much at full strength,” Brown said.

“I’m very comfortable with the players we’ve got coming in. They all know their job. The first thing they’ve got to do is compete well.

“If they get that right, we’ll give ourselves a shot.”

A fresh-faced Phoenix Crossland will make his NRL debut in the McDonald Jones Stadium match but Kurt Mann is expected to start the game in the halves.