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Knights target Cowboys' No.1 Ponga - again

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 19/04/2017 Laine Clark

Kalyn Ponga of the Cowboys makes a break. © Matt Blyth/Getty Images Kalyn Ponga of the Cowboys makes a break. It's not the first time Kalyn Ponga has been in Newcastle's sights.

But Knights coach Nathan Brown says they will target the North Queensland fullback in Saturday's NRL clash in Townsville.

Newcastle have already signed NRL prodigy Ponga on a lucrative four-year deal from 2018.

Brown has zeroed in on the 18-year-old again ahead of their round-eight clash.

Brown said Ponga would receive the same attention as the likes of Billy Slater and Lachlan Coote despite his young age.

"All the fullbacks these days are good players," he said.

"And I don't think any one fullback is treated any differently because they all have a big bearing on the game."

Ponga has been able to provide a glimpse of what he can offer the Knights after filling in for injured Cowboys fullback Coote (calf).

While Brown liked what he saw from Ponga, he hoped he did not witness it against his Knights.

"I thought, in the second half last week, he was quite outstanding," Brown said of Ponga's display in North Queensland's loss to St George Illawarra.

"He contributed quite well for a team that was not going so well although, with a bit of luck, they could have won.

"We would certainly like him to have a quiet game against us - that would be nice."

Cowboys coach Paul Green did not think Ponga would feel any pressure on Saturday to impress his future employers.

"I don't think that'll worry him too much," Green said.

"I think he's got enough on his plate to worry about that at the moment."

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