2018 NRL – Newcastle Knights vs Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Preview

AT A GLANCE

When? Saturday 30th June, 08:30 (UK)

Where? McDonald Jones Stadium

What channel is it on? UK - Newcastle Knights vs Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs will not be televised live in the UK
Australia - Foxtel, LIVE PASS

Where can I stream the match? UK - N/A
Australia - https://www.telstra.com.au/tv-movies-music/sports-offer

Are tickets still available?
http://www.ticketmaster.com.au/newcastle-knights-v-canterburybankstown-bulldogs-newcastle-new-south-wales-30-06-2018/event/1300538FAAD1AE5B?artistid=1109827&majorcatid=10004&minorcatid=695

THE STATISTICS

THE LOWDOWN

KNIGHTS

Head Coach: Nathan Brown

Starting 13: Ponga, Sio, S. Mata'utia, Denniss, Kenny-Dowall, Watson, Cogger, Ese’ese, Griffin, King, Stone, Barnett, Guerra – Interchanges: Levi, Heighington, Yates, Lillyman – Reserves: Buhrer, Ross, Lamb

Unavailable: Tautau Moga, Mitchell Pearce, Jacob Saifiti, Daniel Saifiti, Lachlan Fitzgibbon

  • Newcastle weren’t good enough to stick with Melbourne last time out as they lost back-to-back games to leave their finals hopes hanging by a thread. The Knights were in the contest early in the second half but the game got away from them soon after with Newcastle losing 10-28.

  • Nathan Brown makes just one change to his side with the enforced loss of Lachlan Fitzgibbon through suspension. He is replaced in the second row by Sam Stone.

  • The Knights haven’t won at home since Round 5 when they beat Brisbane with them losing five consecutive home games since then.

BULLDOGS

Head Coach: Dean Pay

Starting 13: Hopoata, B. Morris, Holland, Montoya, Smith, Lewis, Marshall-King, Tolman, Lichaa, Klemmer, Jackson, Martin, Elliott – Interchanges: Brown, Fualalo, Ogden, Eastwood – Reserves: Fine, Frawley, Olive

Unavailable: Josh Morris, Kieran Foran, Raymond Faitala-Mariner

  • Canterbury’s hopes of putting daylight between themselves and bottom-placed Parramatta were dealt a huge blow as they suffered a heavy defeat against Gold Coast. The Bulldogs were poor from the off and never recovered from conceding three tries in the opening 20 minutes as they went down 10-32.

  • The Bulldogs side has a very different feel to it after the departure of Moses Mbye and Aaron Woods. Will Hopoate moves to fullback with Lachlan Lewis comes in for his debut in the halves and Reimis Smith comes into the side on the wing. Raymod Faitala-Mariner is out with a broken hand which means a recall for Rhyse Martin at lock.

  • Canterbury are 1-7 when playing away from home this season with the Bulldogs only managing a further two wins at home with their record standing at 3-11.

THE PREDICTION

Newcastle will hope the visit of Canterbury can provide them with a much-needed win to keep their slim hopes of making the top 8 alive. The Knights are currently six points adrift of eighth-placed Brisbane and know they need to put a winning run together if they are to realistically break into the play-off mix. Canterbury’s season has been a poor one once again and their only battle now is to avoid the wooden spoon. They have a new-look to their side which could provide them with the spark they have been lacking with the Bulldogs only managing to score 209 points so far this season, the lowest total in the NRL. However, the Knights are the selection here with Kalyn Ponga likely to be the difference between the two teams.