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Knights find way to win

nib Newcastle Knights coach Nathan Brown and co-captain Jamie Buhrer spoke to the media following Saturday's seven-point win over the St George Illawarra Dragons at McDonald Jones Stadium.

“When you look at the last games against the (Brisbane) Broncos and the Canterbury (Bankstown Bulldogs), we probably played far better,” explained Brown.

“I thought we were a fair way off in some areas today; we had a lot more one on one misses, there were probably four or five times they went 50 or 60 metres but we found a way to stop them.

“We found a way to win and for the younger guys to understand that scramble defence; just covering your mate or backing him up, that’s what rugby league is about.”

The Knights coach admits there were several highlights from his less experienced players.

“In the first half, Daniel Saifiti at 120kg was scramble defending and sprinting back 30 or 40 metres just to get Gareth Widdop and that’s what it’s about,” Brown commented.

“He was just sensational; he is playing against Test players out there and he was like an old head on the field.

“A couple of the real pleasing things individually if you look at Brock Lamb, he has copped his share but he is 20 playing first grade well before he should’ve started playing first grade which everyone needs to acknowledge.

“What we saw today, he had a very good defensive game, he kicked the ball really well and he was error free, so it’s a really good response from him after he’s had a tough few weeks.

“We have got high hopes for Brock over time, he’s got some basic parts of the game he does very well and as he matures and improves, I’d like to think there’s a footballer there in him.

“Danny Levi at 21 was outstanding so all these younger kids have contributed to us winning the game.

“There were a few blokes there that are going to be disappointed in what they did but as I said to them, your mates found a way to help us win and that’s what it’s all about at the end of the day.”

An elated co-captain Jamie Buhrer said he’d take a win any which way.

“We have had our fair share of pretty losses,” smiled Buhrer.

“A number of games anyone could say we were the better team on the day and we’ve lost so I’ll take an ugly loss every day.

“If we had another five ugly wins in a row, I’ll take it.”

The experienced forward acknowledged his young teammates stepped up.

“In the last five or six weeks, they may have fallen short in areas but they certainly stepped up today and they’re a big reason why we won,” Buhrer stated.

“With 20 to go, I think it was 14-all and we still found ways to hit legs in the tackle.

“They ran 50 a few times but we kept repelling them and I took a lot of comfort from that.

“I generally feel like it is the first time we won that arm wrestle at the back of that second half and that’s how it felt as a team.

“It obviously helps with two minutes to go, Hokko (Trent Hodkinson) slotted a field goal and made it seven.

“We found a way to finish it off; it wasn’t pretty but when it mattered I feel like we won the arm wrestle, we put the try on, we found out a way to close out the game and that is something we have failed to do on numerous times this year so we’re certainly going to enjoy that one."

Next up, the Knights remain on home turf, hosting the Warriors on Saturday.

“We have the Warriors at home next week and we’re going to try and win that too and if we can put a couple of wins in a row and put ourselves in a position to get off the bottom then we are going to do everything we can to do that," Buhrer concluded.

😁🔴🔵 #NRLKnightsDragons #goKnights

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