Round 5 Preview: Newcastle Knights vs Brisbane Broncos

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Newcastle Knights v Brisbane Broncos

Location: McDonald Jones Stadium
Date: Saturday 7 April
Time: 7:35pm NSW, 7:35pm QLD and 9:35pm NZ time
Line ups: Newcastle Knights 1. Kalyn Ponga 2. Shaun Kenny-Dowall 3. Sione Mata’utia 4. Nathan Ross 5. Ken Sio 6. Brock Lamb 7. Mitchell Pearce 8. Herman Ese’ese 9. Slade Griffin 10. Jacob Lillyman 11. Lachlan Fitzgibbon 12. Aidan Guerra 13. Mitch Barnett Interchange: 14. Jamie Buhrer 15. Chris Heighington 16. Jacob Saifiti 17. Daniel Saifiti Reserves: 18. Luke Yates 19. Jack Cogger 20. Danny Levi 21. Cory Denniss

Brisbane Broncos 1. Darius Boyd 2. Corey Oates 3. James Roberts 4. Jack Bird 5. Jamayne Isaako 6. Anthony Milford 7. Kodi Nikorima 8. Matthew Lodge 9. Andrew McCullough 10. Korbin Sims 11. Alex Glenn 12. Matt Gillett 13. Josh McGuire Interchange: 14. Sam Thaiday 15. Joe Ofahengaue 16. Tom Opacic 17. Jaydn Su’A Reserves: 18. Jonus Pearson 19. Tevita Pangai Jr 20. Gehamat Shibasaki 21. Payne Haas Preview: After a golden point win in round 3 last week the Broncos took a step backwards and lost to their neighbours Gold Coast Titans. While Knights lost to Dragons. Both sides sitting at 2-2 a piece will both want to win here to get ahead on the table and set themselves up around the teams vying for the 8. Key Match-ups: Match up 1: Aidan Guerra v Matt Gillett Matt Gillett is suffering this year without a direct halfback to run off. While Guerra has found his form that earns him a Queensland jersey. These 2 will want to impress this week to put their name up for a rep jersey and to gel their teams get a win. Match up 2: Kalyn Ponga v Darius Boyd While Ponga has gone to the Knights to cement himself as their future custodian, Boyd on the other hand is struggling this year. Without a recognised half to run the team Boyd is looking to be the leader in the spine to spark something for the Broncos. Ponga on the other hand has kick started his season with a bang with a couple of tries and a few try saving tackles to boot. Match up 3: Slade Griffin vs Andrew McCullough Griffin has been given the task of Knights starting hooker. He’s given good service so far this year. McCullough is arguably the rudder for the Broncos. He goes down the Broncos go down. Last year this showed when he missed the backend of the year with an ACL injury which he is still gaining mobility of. Prediction: Both sides will need to improve on last week to get the win but I’ve seen more from Newcastle this year to suggest that they will get the win in front of a big Knights home crowd. Knights by 8 -Nath

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