The next assignment for the nib Newcastle Knights will be the Cronulla Sharks this Sunday at Moreton Daily Stadium in Redcliffe.
A solid last-start victory over the Brisbane Broncos saw the Knights rise to ninth on the ladder and tied with seventh and eighth place on points.
The Sharks went down to the Warriors last round but sit only a win away from Newcastle.
The fixture will culminate this season's Women in League Round while act as a huge encounter in the running battle for the top eight spots.
This is your Ultimate Guide to the Newcastle Knights Round 22 fixture with the Cronulla Sharks, brought to you by Mine Super.
CRONULLA SHARKS v NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Date: Sunday August 15th, 2021
Venue: Moreton Daily Stadium, Redcliffe
1. William Kennedy, 2. Sione Katoa, 3. Siosifa Talakai, 4. Jesse Ramien, 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo, 6. Connor Tracey, 7. Braydon Trindall, 8. Braden Hamlin-Uele, 9. Blayke Brailey, 10. Aaron Woods, 11. Briton Nikora, 12. Jack Williams, 13. Toby Rudolf. Interchange: 14. Luke Metcalf, 15. Aiden Tolman, 16. Andrew Fifita, 17. Billy Magoulias. 18th man: 20. Kai O'Donnell.
Coach: Josh Hannay
1. Kalyn Ponga (c) , 2. Enari Tuala, 3. Kurt Mann, 4. Bradman Best, 5. Hymel Hunt, 6. Jake Clifford, 7. Mitchell Pearce, 8. Jacob Saifiti, 9. Jayden Brailey, 10. Daniel Saifiti, 11. Tyson Frizell, 12. Mitch Barnett, 13. Connor Watson. Interchange: 14. Sauaso Sue, 15. David Klemmer, 16. Simi Sasagi, 17. Brodie Jones. 18th man: 18. Josh King.
Coach: Adam O'Brien
LATE MAIL: O'Brien has confirmed the team list for the crunch clash with Cronulla in Redcliffe.
Phoenix Crossland comes out of the side, leaving Josh King as the team's 18th man.
The remainder of the side is unchanged to the one named earlier.
For Cronulla, the side are also 1-17 from the team named on Tuesday.
UPDATE: The Sharks have confirmed their 24 hour update, with Will Chambers and Mawene Hiroti coming out of the side for tomorrow afternoon.
Jirah Momoisea and Starford To'a were the two Knights committed by O'Brien.
EARLIER: Knights Head Coach, Adam O'Brien, has named his 21-man squad for the clash with Cronulla.
Lachlan Fitzgibbon comes out of the side this week, with Simi Sasagi named on the bench to play just his second game in the NRL.
Mitch Barnett moves back to the second-row, with Connor Watson named to start at lock.
Jayden Brailey has also been named to start at hooker after being rested last week.
The rest of the side is unchanged from the one which took down the Broncos last Thursday.
For the Sharks, centre Will Chambers drops from the 17 to the reserves with Siosifa Talakai moving to the centres from the back row, triggering a number of changes to the starting pack.
Jack Williams shifts from lock to the back row, Toby Rudolf drops back from prop to take over at No.13, Braden Hamlin-Uele steps up from the interchange to the front row and Bill Magoulias comes on to the interchange.
The 28-20 win over the Broncos last round marked the Knights ninth win of the season and saw the side notch back-to-back triumphs.
Newcastle have won four of their last six games to put themselves in the fight for the final top eight spots.
After a barren run against Cronulla between 2015 and 2018, losing eight in a row, the Knights have won the last three encounters against the team from the Shire.
The 26-22 result earlier in the year, fondly remembered for Kalyn Ponga's last-gasp try, will bring confidence to the Knights ranks to repeat the performance.
The Sharks have lost three of their last five including a 18-16 defeat to the Warriors in Round 21.
WOMEN IN LEAGUE ROUND
Now in its 15th year, the NRL will celebrate the Harvey Norman Women in League Round this week.
The round puts a focus on not just the role of women within rugby league but also the gender inequality gap in wider society.
In Round 22 the NRL is rallying our community to play a part in accelerating the path to a level playing field.
Levelling the playing field might be simply holding ourselves accountable for our own biased attitudes, challenging gender stereotypes, and calling out sexist behaviour or harassment.
This week the NRL will be shining a spotlight on the women who are instrumental in bringing the game to fans and grassroots players across Australia, to help grow interest in the game amongst female fans and players.
Bradman Best v Jesse Ramien
It will be a huge battle in the centres between two dynamic and powerful outside backs.
'The Brick' or 'The Beast', whatever nickname you like, Bradman has been sensational for the Knights since returning from injury.
172 running metres, averaging 86 metres over the last two games, combined with a try and two try-assists, Best has been a welcome return to the team.
Bradman will line-up opposite former Newcastle Knight Jesse Ramien.
Ramien has made 83 tackle breaks and scored three tries this season and will pose a threat for the Knights defence.
It will be Brailey v Brailey in the middle of the park with the two brothers locking horns for the second time. Jayden will look to make it 2-0 having come out on top back in Round 6.
The two brothers sit first and second for the total amount of receipts in the NRL (possession of the football). Blayke is first with 2,382 receipts and Jayden, second, with 2,174.
The two sides boast high set completion rate percentages with the Sharks sitting second in the NRL with 80 per cent while the Knights are sixth with 79 per cent.
Enari Tuala has five tries in his last eight games, including four in his last two.
Both sides concede an average of 24 points per game making defence crucial to Sunday's outcome.