Knights defy the odds to win with just 12 men


Jacob Saifiti is out of contention for this Friday night’s home game after the NRL judiciary charged him with a Grade Three Reckless High Tackle, which carries a five-game suspension with an early guilty plea or six weeks should he contest the charge and be found guilty at the judiciary.

Halfback Jackson Hastings will be fined $1800 if he pleads guilty to a Careless High Tackle charge on Tommy Talau. The fine increases to $2500 should Hastings fight the charge at the judiciary and be found guilty.


It was carnage at Leichardt Oval yesterday afternoon with the Knights Kalyn Ponga, Jayden Brailey, Tyson Frizell and Jack Johns all failing to make it to the end of Newcastle’s gutsy win over the Wests Tigers.

The Knights defied the odds defeating the Tigers 14-12.

Ponga was knocked out cold in just the second minute of the game – his fourth concussion in ten months.

Brailey was ruled out of the game after also copping a head knock and failing his head injury assessment, Frizell suffered a leg injury and Jack Johns ended up injured as well.

Tyson Gamble and Dom Young starred for the side with Young scoring the Knights first try of the afternoon.

But Young was sent off into the sin bin later in the game and so was Jacob Saifiti leaving the Knights with just 12 men in the final 15 minutes.

The side retained the Allan McMahon Shield in the process and Coach Adam O’Brien said they’ve already proven this year will be different.

“Last year it seemed that it all got a bit too hard for us at times but I think we’ve proven over the last two weeks and throughout summer that things aren’t always going to go to plan for us but it doesn’t mean that we can’t turn it up so there’s a really good example that we can come out the other side of it.”

On Ponga’s concussion, O’Brien said they just have to follow the process.

“We’ll just follow the guidelines. Obliviously he won’t play, we’ve got a five day turnaround to patch that group up so he’s not going to be a part of that and neither will Brailz but we’ll worry about that stuff later.

“They’re both good, they’re both up and about which is a good sign for us.”

The Knights face new NRL team the Dophins at McDonald Jones Stadium this Friday night in Round 3. The Dolphins have been smashing their opponents, but O’Brien isn’t too worried.

“We’re not going to look at the week like that. We’re going to look at the week like we did tonight when we faced some hurdles. We are going to face some hurdles in selecting a team, in just naming a team this week, but we’ll get on with it. We deserve to put that performance in at home and that’s what we’re looking forward to,” O’Brien said.