The nib Newcastle Knights have officially jetted off to the Sunshine Coast after leaving town on Wednesday.
The NRL decided to move 12 clubs, including the Knights, to isolated hubs in Queensland for the next month at the least to keep the game going in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak in Sydney.
Knights co-captain Jayden Brailey spoke to the media via Zoom before departing and talked openly about the side’s mentality moving forward.
“We’re all in this together,” Brailey said.
“We’re all embracing the challenge. We’re lucky we can still play the game that we love and earn our money.
“I’m pretty lucky I’ve got my partner who is coming up, and I appreciate the sacrifice a lot of the players in the game are going through right now.
“We also feel for the people in (Greater) Sydney going through a lockdown.”
Families will fly up on Saturday and will self-isolate for 14 days before reconnecting with the players on the Sunshine Coast.
Brailey said the players will band around their teammates who don’t have their families arriving.
“I really feel for the guys that don’t have their families coming up,” Brailey said
“They’re making a big sacrifice for us.
“We’ll rally around them, stay strong as a squad and hopefully play some good football."
After a couple of much-needed wins on the bounce, the formidable Melbourne is the next assignment for the Knights.
The side will hit the training paddock tomorrow in an important session before flying to play the Storm on Saturday.
Sitting just outside the eight on 16 points, every game is significant for the Knights in their pursuit of a finals appearance.
“We need to win majority of those eight games to make it into finals football, especially how tight it is between eighth to 12th spot,” Brailey said.
“The next couple of weeks is crucial in the scope of our season.
“This is probably the healthiest we’ve been (as a squad) all year so it’s a really exciting time for us.
“It’s a big challenge and as a squad, we’re looking forward to it."