Knights suffer heartbreaking loss across the ditch

The Newcastle Knights suffered a heartbreaking loss across the ditch against the Warriors last night going down 20-12 in Wellington.

It starts out well with back-rower Lachlan Fitzgibbon scoring the first try off a Kalyn Ponga pass, but the Warriors hit back with two quickfire tries.

The New Zealand side led going into the second half 10-6, and Newcastle did come out firing.

Hymel Hunt scored the first try of the second half for the Knights, but they couldn’t quite keep the momentum up against a strong homeside.

There was plenty of drama last night with Ponga almost having to be dragged off the field late in the game, forced off after an independent doctor called for a head injury assessment.

Ponga collided with Addin Fonua-Blake and stayed down for a few seconds before jumping back up and continuing.

But, an independent doctor raised the alarm and he was sent off.

“I’ve been knocked out before, I definitely wasn’t in any state.

“I couldn’t believe it, with ten minutes to go, game on the line, I’m literally fine,” Ponga said in the post-game press conference.

Ponga’s 2022 season ended prematurely after he suffered three head knocks in six weeks last season.

He will be assessed in the coming days, while there’s more concern for fellow player Tyson Frizell who was ruled out in the first half after knocking his head while making a tackle. He’ll be assessed this week as well.

The Newcastle Knights will face the Wests Tigers at Leichhardt Oval next Sunday for Round 2.