The NSW Blues have been named for the first game of the 2017 #Origin series.
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The game started off with the Knights in pure control with a string of three penalties in a row helping them to build momentum before Jarrod Mullen saw the Warriors defence press forward so a perfect kick set up Sione Mata'utia for the first of his three tries for the afternoon.
The Knights continued their good attacking form when another left hand raid was successful when Joseph Leilua got through a gap to extend the lead for the Knights.
The biggest talking point of the game came soon after when the Sione Mata'utia streaked down the sideline off a blind slide raid from a scrum on their on 10m line, the controversy was the fact that as the ball came out of the scrum a covering Shaun Johnson had run into referee Gavin Morris which meant he had no chance of covering the play, despite the incident the referees awarded the try and the Warriors were left fuming.
This spurred the Warriors into action with a David Fusitua scoring a miracle try in the corner opening their scoring before Manu Vatuvei got his first of the afternoon to take the score back to 14-10 at halftime.
The second half started well for the Warriors when Nathan Friend took advantage of a super soft Knights defensive line to bring the scores back to 14-14.
From there the Knights hit back through the Mata'utia brothers with Sione getting his third and Chanel getting his try of the afternoon, which was split between a Kurt Gidley penalty goal.
David Fusitua got the Warriors back into the game with another special try, this was counteracted though when Chad Townsend missed yet another goal attempt which was then punished when Kurt Gidley put over another penalty goal.
Manu Vatuvei got the final try of the game when he himself used his skill to keep himself in the field of play after the Knights didn't make a play at the last tackle kick.
The Warriors had two chances to score though an intercepted pass then a knock on both of which were from Sam Tomkins closed the door on the Warriors winning chances.
The Knights will look to get three wins in a row next weekend when they travel to Brisbane to take on the Broncos next Saturday, meanwhile the Warriors go back home when they take on the Sydney Roosters at Mt Smart Stadium next Sunday afternoon.
TEAM NEWS | Knights lose Willie Mason and Akuila Uate - this sees Sione Mata'utia (#20, wing) and David Fa'alogo (#18, prop) starting. Chris Houston fills the remaining bench spot. Positionally, Travis Waddell will start in jersey #14 at hooker while #9 Adam Clydsdale will drop to the bench. The Warriors are 1-17.
Here come the NZ Warriors out onto the field at Hunter Stadium, in the white away jerseys today
Here come the Knights onto Hunter Stadium and they are wearing the close the gap, aboriginal design jersey
2: PENALTY WARRIORS: Knights penalised by Gavin Reynolds for a second effort in the tackle, Warriors go the tap
5: PENALTY KNIGHTS: Warriors hold too long in the tackle and Travis Waddell takes the quick tap
8: Poor last tackle option for the Knights and Tyrone Roberts is tackled on the last about 5m out from the Warriors line
9: PENALTY KNIGHTS: Gavin Morris penalises the Warriors for being inside the 10m which gives the Knights a piggyback out of their own 20m
13: The Knights trying an expansive game although the last tackle option catches them out and the kick goes dead
14: PENALTY WARRIORS: Knights ruled to have gone too early in defence according to Gavin Morris
15: The Warriors will get another set of six after Gavin Morris rules the Warriors kick was played at before going into touch
16: UNFORCED ERROR NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Sam Tomkins makes an unforced error.
Sam Tomkins has to reach back to catch a terrible pass from Shaun Johnson but he can't take it and pressure is off the Knights
19: Feleti Mateo gets collected high but enough for the VR to put it on report
19: PENALTY KNIGHTS: Another offside penalty against the Warriors blown by Gavin Morris, Knights on the attack again
24: Poor kick on the last gives Sam Tomkins a free run to the 20m and beyond
26: TRY NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS
Scored by Sione Mata'utia. Kick to come.
Sione Mata'utia gets a double after streaking down the sideline after Shaun Johnson can't get to the tackle through contact with Gavin Morris
32: The Warriors throw the ball around on the last with very little gain with the Knights defence a class above
33: PENALTY WARRIORS: The ball rolls free from the Warriors but Gavin Reynolds finds a strip and penalises the Knights for it
38: TRY NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Scored by Manu Vatuvei. Kick to come.
Manu Vatuvei strolls over for his first of the afternoon, after the Video Refs can't find conclusive evidence to overturn the onfield decision of TRY
40: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Conversion attempt by Chad Townsend successful.
An absolute perfect kick from Chad Townsend sees the kick go through the middle of the uprights to close the gap to 4
40: That's Half Time at Hunter Stadium - the Newcastle Knights take a 14-10 lead over the NZ Warriors in an entertaining half of footy
40: Both sides are back on the field at Hunter Stadium for the second 40 minutes
41: PENALTY WARRIORS: Opening penalty of the second half goes to the Warriors and they go down field
47: Edge to edge attack for the Warriors but they don't get points but do get the repeat set
48: Shaun Johnson goes sideways then throws a long ball that ends up with the touch judge
50: PENALTY KNIGHTS: The Warriors try a bit too much in the tackle and are penalised - Count now 6-5 in favour of the Knights
54: Knights go close again but Sam Tomkins dives desperately over the ball and stops another Knights try
58: Plenty of excitement and passing on the last tackle play before an average Leilua kick goes straight to the Warriors defence
62: PENALTY KNIGHTS: Warriors hang around too long in tackle on their own 10m and they are penalised
67: Warriors on the attack after successfully using the short kickoff
72: UNFORCED ERROR NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS
Chad Townsend makes an unforced error.
Shaun Johnson forces an offload but Chad Townsend can't catch the ball, Knights have the scrum 40m out from their own line
74: Another successful short kick off for the Warriors after the Knights tap it back and Sam Lousi is first to the ball