Talent and experience. That’s what it comes down to.
Many eyes will be on the new halves pairing of Kalyn Ponga and Mitchell Pearce come Friday.
The dynamic duo is considered a weapon for the Newcastle Knights.
With an immaculate kicking game from Pearce and Ponga’s trademark stepping, there’s plenty of excitement surrounding what they can create.
None more than Knights legend Matty Johns.
When asked by Fox League if Pearce was the best No.7 to wear the Knights jersey since his brother Andrew.
“The best No.7 ever to wear a Knights jersey in Mitchell Pearce,” Johns laughed.
As for the no. 6 spot; his old position… Ponga might be a close second.
“Second best no. 6 ever to play,’ Johns joked with Fox League.
“If I had 10 percent of Kalyn’s natural talent… seriously.”
Johns admits with combined talents, the Ponga Pearce pairing could potentially be the best half combination in the competition.
That’s a big call but Johns believes if both stay fit, it could catapult the Knights into the finals series this year; maybe even top four.
“Kalyn has got the talent, young legs and confidence and Pearce has got the experience,” Johns said.
The former Knights five-eighth can’t fault the pair on paper, although believes success will come down to certain factors.
It will ride on other combinations, team targets and a new line of defence.
And of course, staying healthy to be on the field week in, week out.