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18 STARS OF 2018 | Nick Meaney

Starring time and time again for the club’s Intrust Super Premiership NSW outfit in their run to the competition’s semi-finals last season, it seems a matter of when – not if – Nick Meaney will make his NRL debut for the Newcastle Knights in 2018.

A member of the Intrust Super Premiership NSW Residents squad to travel to Queensland in May, Meaney’s talent was twice rewarded in the representative arena, as he earned a NSW Under-20s start just two weeks later.

“An NRL debut would be a massive achievement for myself,” Meaney told Knights TV last month.

“While that’s a big goal, I also need to focus on getting back to [the Intrust Super Premiership NSW], doing better there and hopefully obtaining my position back at fullback.

“Maybe as the year goes on, I could get bumped up into the first-grade team, but we’ll see what happens.”

A player with undoubted potential, Meaney knows he may have to bide his time in the Hunter, following Kaylyn Ponga’s arrival to the club from the North Queensland Cowboys.

A pure, versatile athlete with the makings of a long-term NRL prospect, the 20-year-old star hasn’t ruled out a backline shift in the hopes to kick-start his time in the top grade.

“Growing up I was used to playing in different positions and getting a feel for what kind of job you’ve got to do,” Meaney said.

“I would be happy enough to play in the centre or the wing, anywhere really, although fullback is a preference of mine because I like the amount of workload you have to do.

“That just makes me a better player with all the competition, and at training we are competing against each other for spots.

“Kalyn Ponga is a great player and that’s only going to make me even better myself.”

Acknowledgement of Country

New South Wales Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.