The nib Newcastle Knights have returned to pre-season duties, with virtually all hands on-deck ahead of a gruelling few months of intense training.

The entire squad has been checked over by the Club’s medical and coaching staff, with Head of Physical Performance, Balin Cupples, highly impressed with the fitness of the squad.

“It’s an exciting time of the year, and the boys have obviously done work to their credit,” Cupples said.

“Lots of players turned up for sessions before the pre-season start.

“Some of their initial testing has showed that, but in saying that they’ve been tested plenty of times already, and we’re just getting started.”

BEAU FERMOR

The up-and-coming second rower missed the final few games of last season after suffering a devastating ACL injury.

However, the determined young forward has impressed medical staff with his desire and determination to return to action as soon as possible.

“Beauy’s worked really hard over the break, and only spent minimal time back up in Queensland,” Cupples said.

“He’s worked really hard on his quad baulk, and he’s got really good symmetry there between his legs.

“He’s able now to work into that next strength phase, and we’re able to get him onto the field and build some straight line running which is great for Beau.”

MASON LINO

Similar to Fermor, Lino suffered his injury late in the season, going down with a shoulder injury in the final round loss to Penrith.

Racing the clock to be fit for round one, Lino now has his arm out of a sling and is building towards a return sooner rather than later.

“He again has spent plenty of time in Newcastle over the break and plenty of time with the rehab and physio staff,” Cupples said.

“In line with that, he’s come through his protective phase and goes into that initial strength phase.

“He’s also getting out onto the field to build some straight line running.

“Both Beau and Mace are around team training sessions and there’s eyes on with skills and with the new coaching crew, there’s plenty of listening for them to pick up.”

Injured players and expected return dates:

Mason Lino (Shoulder - Early year) 

Beau Fermor (Knee - Early-Mid season)

Meet the players on McHappy Day