Knights suffer an early season blow
After a horror 32-0 loss to Manly last weekend, the Newcastle Knights have received more bad news with bullocking centre Dane Gagai out for the next six weeks.
The 22-year-old was cleared of more serious damage after scans on Monday with Newcastle coach Wayne Bennett calling in former State of Origin centre Timana Tahu for their clash against the Cowboys.
The Knights have reshuffled much of their side for home game, with Anthony Quinn moving to right centre for Tahu to take his place on the left.
David Fa’alogo will make his first appearance for the Knights, named in the front row in place of Willie Mason, who has a calf injury according to News.com.au.
Matt Hilder will again start at hooker after replacing Travis Waddell (hamstring) against the Sea Eagles.
The Cowboys had responded to their 22-point drubbing at the hands of Melbourne last round, with halfback Michael Morgan while Tariq Sims has been dumped from the side.
Knights: Darius Boyd, James McManus, Anthony Quinn, Timana Tahu, Akuila Uate, Jarrod Mullen, Kurt Gidley (c), Kade Snowden, Matt Hilder, David Fa’alogo, Beau Scott, Chris Houston, Jeremy Smith. Interchange: Tyrone Roberts, Neville Costigan, Robbie Rochow, Alex McKinnon.
Cowboys: Matthew Bowen, Ashley Graham, Brent Tate, Kane Linnett, Antonio Winterstein, Johnathan Thurston (c), Michael Morgan, Matt Scott (c), Scott Moore, James Tamou, Gavin Cooper, Glenn Hall, Dallas Johnson. Interchange: Anthony Mitchell, Ashton Sims, Scott Bolton, Jason Taumalolo, Blake Leary.