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Depleted Knights hold on for inspired win over the Tigers

The nib Newcastle Knights have won their first game of the season with an inspired and resolute 14-12 win over the Wests Tigers.

Decimated by injuries to key players and down to one player on the bench for the majority of the game, the Knights dug deep to keep the Tigers to two tries and score three of their own to claim the Allan McMahon Shield.

In Lachlan Fitzgibbon's 100th NRL game and Tyson Gamble making his Club debut, the Knights produced a terrific defensive performance having withstood multiple Tigers attacks to come away with the two points at Leichhardt Oval.


The match kicked off on a sunny March afternoon at Leichhardt Oval with the three men's senior grades playing across the day.

Our boys faced some early adversity with Kalyn Ponga coming from the field with a head knock.

However, the Knights would post the first points with Dom Young diving over.

A quick shift to the right found the unmarked Englishman for his first try of the season, 11 minutes into the game.

Gagai provides for Young

Shortly after, our milestone man scored the red and blue's second hitting his signature line.

A ball from Tyson Gamble found Lachlan Fitzgibbon and the forward burst through to reach out and score in his 100th game.

Fitzgibbon crawls over

Jayden Brailey was another casualty after failing his HIA. The Knights activated their 18th man with Brodie Jones coming onto the bench.

Newcastle's defence was tested defending against multiple sets of six from the Tigers attack.

The team were forced to defend with 12 men with Dom Young sent to the sin-bin after a professional foul following a breakaway from Luke Brooks.

The Tigers would score before the break through Asu Kepaoa as the Knights led 10-6 at half-time.

Shortly in the second half, the Knights were left to one player on the bench with Tyson Frizell coming from the field with an ankle injury.

Newcastle continued to show tremendous resolve with Leo Thompson producing a brilliant tackle to stop a Tigers attack.

Big Thompson tackle forces error

There were points on offer when the Knights were able to get down the attacking end of the field with Young adding the Knights third.

In a similar play to the first half, a fast move down the right had the winger diving over for his second.

Young gets his second

The Knights were again reduced to 12 and would have to show plenty of grit in the final stages with Jacob Saifiti sent off for a high shot.

The Knights were desperate in defence

Stefano Utoikamanu scored a late try for the home side to set up a grandstand finish.

Testament to the whole performance, Newcastle's defence stood firm in the final  minutes to keep the Tigers at bay and claim our first win of the season.