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STERLO’S SAY: Not the right time for Knights to swing the axe

Rugby League legend Peter Sterling believes it’s not the right time for Newcastle coach Nathan Brown to be swinging the axe this late into the season.

The Knights put in a below par performance last week which saw them upset 28-26 in the Hunter at the hands of Wests Tigers.

Brown was furious with some of the efforts from a number of players in his team – prompting him to drop Jesse Ramien, Herman Ese’ese, Danny Levi and Jamie Buhrer – for his team’s round 20 clash with Manly.

The club have also confirmed they have granted Jesse Ramien permission to negotiate with other clubs on the back of a season which hasn’t lived up to the expectations placed on him.

Sterling told Macquarie Sports Radio Halftime it’s not the right time to be chopping and changing.

“These are changes you don’t want to make so close to September,” Sterling said.

“To be fiddling around with your spine is far from ideal, obviously that’s on the back of a string of losses as well.

“I was of the belief that Kurt Mann was basically the man that they had designated as their number six, but he’s now pushed onto the flank and Mason Lino comes in, he has only played six games in the top grade this year.

“So it’s far from ideal for a Newcastle side who are looking to get back into finals contention.

“All of a sudden they are facing an onslaught and they have to travel to Brookvale to tackle a Manly team who went to Melbourne and was successful.

“So it’s a daunting task, but if this Newcastle Knights side are to be true finals contenders, this is the kind of game they need to travel and win.”

Newcastle sit one point outside the eight and play Manly at Lottoland on Saturday afternoon.


Click ‘play’ to hear the full interview below.

Image credit: Ashley Feder/Getty Images.