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Wests Tigers will travel to Newcastle in a bid to claim their first win of the season when they face the Knights at McDonald Jones Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

Newcastle have started the 2021 campaign with wins against the Bulldogs and Warriors and will be looking to remain unbeaten, while Michael Maguire’s men will be eager to spoil Mitchell Pearce’s 300th NRL game as they look to bounce back from last Sunday’s heavy loss to the Sydney Roosters.

Wests Tigers will receive a massive boost with Maori representative forward Zane Musgrove selected for the encounter after serving his two-match ban for a shoulder charge in the All Stars game.

Musgrove — who will start at prop in Maguire’s side — will be eager to start his new season on a high after missing most of 2020 due to injury.

Five-eighth Adam Doueihi — who sat out in Round 1 through suspension — showed some positive signs in his first game of the season against the Roosters but will be looking to take his performance to a new level against the Knights this time around.

Liddle at his scheming best

Wests Tigers recruit Daine Laurie is another player who will be looking to maintain his momentum after again impressing against the Roosters. The young fullback ran for a team-high 180 metres and made nine tackle-breaks as he received his first ever Dally M point for a solid performance.

Speedy centre James Roberts has been named for the Round 3 match after being a late withdrawal ahead of last Sunday’s match due to a minor shoulder injury.

Maguire will be looking for a much-improved performance by his men on the left edge after they struggled in defence on a number of occasions against the Roosters.

The coach said he’ll consider making changes for the encounter and called upon his players to improve in Round 3.

Press Conference: NRL Round 2

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Knights five-eighth Kurt Mann (knee) makes a swift return after his late withdrawal from the side to play the Warriors.

Mann's replacement Phoenix Crossland was suspended for a crusher tackle so uncapped playmaker Nathanael Sasagi has been named in the reserves.

With both clubs locked at 15 wins against each other, the winner of the match will go ahead on the historic standings.

MATCH DETAILS

Date — Sunday, March 28, 2020

Time — 4:05pm AEDT

Venue — McDonald Jones Stadium

LATEST TEAM NEWS

Wests Tigers: Unchanged from the side originally named during the week. Zane Musgrove returns from suspension to start at prop with Joe Ofahengaue dropping back to the bench, while James Roberts returns in place of Joey Leilua.

Newcastle Knights: Dominic Young will make his NRL debut in the centres following the withdrawal of Bradman Best due to an elbow injury. Young's promotion into the starting side sees Gehamat Shibasaki moved on to the wing. 

Team Lists

Backs

  • Fullback for Knights is number 1 Tex Hoy
    Fullback for Wests Tigers is number 1 Daine Laurie
  • Winger for Knights is number 5 Hymel Hunt
    Winger for Wests Tigers is number 2 David Nofoaluma
  • Centre for Knights is number 3 Enari Tuala
    Centre for Wests Tigers is number 3 Tommy Talau
  • Centre for Knights is number 32 Dominic Young
    Centre for Wests Tigers is number 4 James Roberts
  • Winger for Knights is number 18 Gehamat Shibasaki
    Winger for Wests Tigers is number 5 Asu Kepaoa
  • Five-Eighth for Knights is number 6 Kurt Mann
    Five-Eighth for Wests Tigers is number 6 Adam Doueihi
  • Halfback for Knights is number 7 Mitchell Pearce
    Halfback for Wests Tigers is number 7 Luke Brooks

Forwards

  • Prop for Knights is number 8 David Klemmer
    Prop for Wests Tigers is number 8 Zane Musgrove
  • Hooker for Knights is number 9 Jayden Brailey
    Hooker for Wests Tigers is number 9 Jacob Liddle
  • Prop for Knights is number 10 Daniel Saifiti
    Prop for Wests Tigers is number 10 James Tamou
  • 2nd Row for Knights is number 11 Tyson Frizell
    2nd Row for Wests Tigers is number 11 Luke Garner
  • 2nd Row for Knights is number 12 Mitchell Barnett
    2nd Row for Wests Tigers is number 12 Luciano Leilua
  • Lock for Knights is number 14 Sauaso Sue
    Lock for Wests Tigers is number 13 Alex Twal

Interchange

  • Interchange for Knights is number 13 Connor Watson
    Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 14 Joe Ofahengaue
  • Interchange for Knights is number 15 Jacob Saifiti
    Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 15 Thomas Mikaele
  • Interchange for Knights is number 16 Josh King
    Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 16 Stefano Utoikamanu
  • Interchange for Knights is number 17 Brodie Jones
    Interchange for Wests Tigers is number 17 Moses Mbye

Match Officials

  • Referee: Gerard Sutton
  • Touch Judge: Belinda Sharpe
  • Touch Judge: Chris Butler
  • Senior Review Official: Henry Perenara

Last updated:

EVENT DETAILS

1:40pm — Gates Open at McDonald Jones Stadium

1:45pm — KOE NSW Cup, Newcastle Knights vs. Western Suburbs Magpies

4:05pm — NRL, Newcastle Knights vs. Wests Tigers

TV, RADIO AND LIVE STREAM INFORMATION

TV — Live via Channel 9 (Sydney/Brisbane), GEM (Melbourne/Adelaide/Perth), FOX League (Ch.502)

Radio — AM 702 ABC Grandstand, AM 873 2GB, FM 104.9 Triple M

Live Stream — 9Now, KAYO Sports, Watch NRL (int.), Sky Sport 4 (NZ only)

LATEST NEDS ODDS

H2H — Wests Tigers ($3.10), Newcastle Knights ($1.36)

Line — Wests Tigers (+9.5) $2.00, Newcastle Knights (-9.5) $2.00

Odds correct as of 9:00am, Tuesday, 23rd March. 18+ only, Gamble responsibly.

HISTORY

Head-to-Head — Played 30, Newcastle Knights 15, Wests Tigers 15

At McDonald Jones Stadium — Played 17, Newcastle Knights 9, Wests Tigers 8

Last Time They Met — Newcastle Knights 44 def. Wests Tigers 4 (Rd 13, 2020)

MATCH OFFICIALS

Referee — Gerard Sutton

Touch Judges — Belinda Sharpe & Chris Butler

Review Official — Henry Perenara