Written by Oliver Kellner-Dunk
In just their second NRLW season the Newcastle Knights have emerged as premiership contenders with two big wins to start the season.
Two weeks ago they made a big statement by handing competition heavyweights the Brisbane Broncos their fourth ever loss and did so by taking control of a close game in the second half, winning the game 32-14.
Beating the three-time NRLW premiers gave the Knights a real confidence boost heading into their clash with the competition’s other Queensland-based club the Gold Coast Titans last Sunday.
Karyn Murphy’s Titans proved a much tougher opponent for the Knights but a dominant display in the first half was enough to secure victory.
Over the past two seasons the Knights have built a squad brimming with stars with arguably the best player in the competition Millie Boyle joining the club this season from the Broncos.
She has also been handed the responsibility of captain this season and was proud of Newcastle’s effort against the Titans when fronting the media after the game.
“It was a big battle, especially in the middle,” said Boyle.
“That second half we let them get in a little bit and couldn’t get the momentum back.
“We had a few injuries and a lot of girls shifted in positions but we adapted really well.
“With 10 minutes to go everyone had to dig deep.
“We need to improve, we knew we couldn’t come out this week and back it up before.”
Next week the Knights host the Parramatta Eels at midday on Sunday with the Eels still looking for their first win of the season after a first-round loss to defending premiers the Sydney Roosters and a close encounter with the St George Illawarra Dragons.
Following their game against the Eels, the Knights will face the Roosters in what could be a top-of-the-table clash with both clubs currently occupying the top two positions on the ladder.
Newcastle are currently in a great position to qualify for their first NRLW finals series and possibly become the third team to win the competition.
Knights fans will certainly be getting behind their women’s team as the men are about to miss the top right for the first time since 2019 and possibly finish in the bottom four.