Warriors v Knights: Tevaga shifts to prop; Clifford's NRL return

The Warriors were far from disgraced against the Dragons but for all their effort it was a third loss on the trot and another frustrating day for the players and coach Nathan Brown.

Leading 18-12 early in the second half the Warriors had put themselves in the box seat to notch a fifth win of the season but errors again proved costly and the opportunity was lost.

The Knights started well enough against Brisbane and looked to be dialled in but their hopes were dashed by a couple of controversial calls and a late Broncos stampede which blew the scoreline out.

Both sides will be desperate to turn their fortunes around and keep touch with the top eight and whoever controls the ball best and maintains their discipline will come away with the victory.

The Rundown
Team news

Warriors: Unchanged from the team named earlier in the week. Chanel Harris-Tavita returns at five-eighth while the unavailability of Addin Fonua-Blake (injury) and Matt Lodge (released) sees Ben Murdoch-Masila and Jazz Tevaga named at prop. Mid-season recruit Dunamis Lui remains among the reserves following the 24-hour update, and could come into the final team on game day. 

Knights: Jake Clifford will partner Anthony Milford in the halves as the Knights continue to battle injury — this time it's Bradman Best (elbow) who is out, with Enari Tuala replacing him at centre. There were no changes to the team in the 24-hour update with no further changes expected on game day.

Key match-up
Reece Walsh v Kalyn Ponga: With a sunny afternoon forecast for Redcliffe, two of the NRL's great entertainers get the perfect stage to showcase their skills. Walsh is yet to recapture the form that made him an instant sensation in 2021 but he is capable of tearing the Knights apart if he is allowed room to move while Ponga seems to have the weight of the world on his shoulders as he tries to spark his team week after week. Having racked up 179 metres, two tackle breaks and two line breaks against Brisbane it feels like the Knights No.1 gun might just be ready to explode.

Stat Attack
The Warriors and Knights sit 14th and 16th on the list when it comes to tackle breaks in 2022. Newcastle have come up with 292 tackle breaks with Dane Gagai (40) their top contributor. The Warriors have had 274 tackle breaks with Reece Walsh leading the way on 45.




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