Experience told for Knights
July 23, 2012 12:11:37 UK
Newcastle coach Wayne Bennett said it was the Knights' experience that counted as his side beat the Warriors 24-19 in Auckland.
The victory broke the Knights' six-year losing streak in the city and could have heralded the end of the Warriors' finals hopes.
We picked up most of our tries up over them (the backs), we just had a field day. They were inexperienced.Wayne Bennett
Newcastle were 18 points down within the first 16 minutes, but battled back and scored four unanswered tries as they took advantage of the home side's relative youth.
With 593 caps shared across his back division - 347 more than the Warriors' - Bennett said the Knights were able to dominate.
"We picked up most of our tries up over them (the backs), we just had a field day. They were inexperienced," he said.
"I made sure I had all my experienced players out there as long as I could," he said.
"That's why I didn't put Zane (Tetevano) back on in the second half because he's had maybe 10 NRL games.
"If you've got an inexperienced player, they're going to make a mistake and they're going to cost you when the game's that tight."
One of the key moments came when rookie Omar Slaimankhel's off-load went straight to Knight Dane Gagai who streaked away to earn his side the lead and the win.
"That's the problem in the NRL, it's a real issue, bringing inexperienced players in," Bennett added. "Inexperience does cost you in this competition."
The Knights are 5657.00 to win the Grand Final, with the Brisbane Broncos 5657.00.
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