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Presser Points: AOB and Ponga react to Bulldogs clash

nib Newcastle Knights NRL Head Coach, Adam O'Brien, and Captain, Kalyn Ponga, spoke to the media following the side's 10-point victory over the Bulldogs on Friday night.

After seven games without a win, the Knights put in a steely defensive performance mixed with some attacking flair to get a vital two points.

The Coach and Captain spoke about the performance, Edrick Lee's return, young players stepping up and new recruit, Anthony Milford, joining the team.

AOB and Ponga on Bulldogs win


"We needed to win, how it looked in terms of attack, didn't really matter to me. I just wanted to see that defensive resolve," O'Brien said.

"In particular in the first half, we had to do multiple sets on our try-line. It was an important game to us and that showed through our defensive actions I felt.

"In the first half, we were using the ball well and it's still a young spine with Adam Clune, Tex Hoy and Chris Randall with Kalyn so I thought they done a fair job, and in the conditions.

"Without jumping ahead too far, it's important that we deliver that down there (Newcastle) next week.

"We're not completely content with our performance, we just needed to win."

NRL Match Highlights: Knights v Bulldogs


"I just wanted to get involved, wouldn't say it was my best game, but as a team we showed up in defence," Ponga said.

"There is things we can work on (especially) at the end of each half, but at the end of the day we wanted that win and we fought hard for it.


"He has been away from the game for a long time and he comes in and we get off to a reasonable start and then he comes into a seven game losing patch, so it hasn't been great for Edrick," O'Brien said.

"So for him to be down there and smiling the way Edrick does, gives us a fair bit of energy his big smile of his.

"I'm (also) really happy for young blokes like Dom Young, not many people can do that on Addo-Carr.

"To run him down the sideline and put him into touch, I don't know if anyone can do it.

"I think Phoenix Crossland when he came onto the field (played well), they're only young guys and I'm really proud of them and they get to experience fighting for a win."


"I've asked him a few questions over the last couple of weeks, he's experienced , he's been through the highs and lows of footy, played at the top level, played in a Grand Final," Ponga said.

"He's been training well, it will be exciting to play with him.

"He's a classy player, we've all seen him at his best. For us, we just want him to come here and play footy and enjoy what he's doing.

"I know he's keen to get out there and play, we've welcomed him with open arms and we're keen to get him on the field."