CLEARED: Knights signing Curtis Naughton is set to debut for Maitland on Saturday. Picture: Facebook via Hull FCNewcastleKnights officials are confident English Super League recruit Curtis Naughton will be cleared in time todebut for Maitland against Macquarie at Coronation Oval on Saturday.
The Knights recently signed the former Bradford, Hull FC and Leigh player on a part-time contract with their reserve grade squad and Naughton is keen to show his wares in the Newcastle Rugby League competition.
The 22-year-old, mainly a winger and fullback, hopes to make it with the NRL club and has been linked with Maitland to get some match practice.
However, after training with the Pickers on Thursday night there were concerns on game eve that Naughton wouldn’t join fellow English Super League pair Luke Dorn and Dane Tilse for the upcoming encounter becauseonline registration procedures would not be completed before kickoff.
The Herald understands Naughton will get the green light for the last-placed side as they look to keep their semi-final aspirations alive.
“It’s a boost we definitely need,” Maitland coach Trevor Ott said.
“We’ve just got no outside backs at the moment.”
Naughton is set to wear the No.1 jersey and Dorn will shift to the halves.
Macquarie coach Adam Bettridge said fullback Mitch Manson and prop Adam Swadling were among five players to pass fitness tests at training this week.
Over at Cahill Oval on Sunday and Lakes skipper Chris Adams makes his long-awaited return from a fractured radius in the Seagullsmeeting with Central.
TheButcher Boys may secure the services ofJace Delaney at hooker as he waits for work visa issues to be sorted ahead of an overseas trip.
The Creer Cup will also be up for grabs at Belmont.
The remaining round 10 fixtures featuring Souths, Cessnock, Wests and Kurri have been postponed until later in the season with Townson and Harker ovals still closed by Newcastle City Council.
Meanwhile North Newcastle quartet Caitlin Moran, Kylie Hilder, Bec Young and Simone Smith were on Friday named in the NSW women’s squad to defend the Blues interstate title against Queensland on July 23.
The 31-player team, coached by South Newcastle mentor Ben Cross, will gather in Wollongong on Saturday for training and fitness tests.
RE-SCHEDULED: Western Suburbs vKurri Kurri(July 15-16);South Newcastle v Cessnock (August 12-13).
SPORTING DECLARATION: Why Sunday’s game is so important for the Knights
SET OF SIX: Tony Butterfield tackles this week’s issues in rugby league
COMEBACK: Macquarie’s Nathan Hinton inspired by son