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In the News: Hunt winging it, Aus Day honour, J-Saf's big year

There’s been no shortage of interest in our boys this week.

The nib Newcastle Knights attracted plenty of media attention and we’ve pulled together some of it in case you missed it.

BTP Ep 9: Inside team photo. Jersey design. Season launch

Hunt happy to stick to the wing

Hymel Hunt was all quality last season.

He was the only player to feature in all 24 games for the Club, scoring nine tries and earning a two-year extension on his contract.

While he was brought to the Club as a centre, Hunt found himself shifting to the right wing thanks to injuries to the likes of Edrick Lee, as well as the emergence of Bradman Best in his original position at left centre.

The 25-year-old, in a piece penned by Newcastle Herald scribe Barry Toohey, claimed he is willing to play wherever coach Adam O’Brien needs him.

"I said to the coach that I was prepared to play anywhere this year, depending on what he needs," he said.

"Obviously I prefer centre, but wherever the team needs me. I'm preparing as if I'll play some wing, so I've been doing a lot of catching practice. With the new rule - no tackling in the air - there's going to be a lot of emphasis on catching cleanly."

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Aus Day honour for founding father

He was one of the men most responsible for getting a Newcastle team admitted into the NSWRL.

As a result, he became the Newcastle Knights’ number one ticket holder in 1988 and spent two stints on the Club’s board, for a combined total of 20 seasons.

He also spent decades as a player, referee and official for the Newcastle Rugby League.

And now, Leigh Maughan has been recognised for his life-long contribution to rugby league in Newcastle.

Lino: Trial goals, future and No.6

"I just wanted to get Newcastle up to a standard of rugby league to have somewhere for the kids to follow on," Maughan told Newcastle Herald journalist Nick Bielby.

"I wanted to see Newcastle get their fair shake of what was going on.

"The community backed me all the way."

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J-Saf primed for big season

Daniel Saifiti went from impact bench forward to State of Origin rep in just 12 months.

He earned a handsome contract extension as a result, and now twin brother Jacob Saifiti is chasing a similar pay off in 2020.

The man known as ‘J-Saf’ is off-contract at the conclusion of this season and acknowledges his need for a big season.

"Yeah, I'm off contract so it's make or break for me," he told The Newcastle Herald.

J-Saf: 'It's make or break'

"But I've put my best foot forward this pre-season to make sure I'm playing my best footy. It's definitely the fittest I've ever been, body composition-wise and all that sort of stuff.

"This is my first full pre-season since my first one back in 2014-15 so the body feels good. Hopefully in the trials and for round one, I'll be hitting the ground running."

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