Knights forward charged over brutal KO collision

Knights forward charged over brutal KO collision

Knights forward Jacob Saifiti is facing up to two games suspended over a shoulder charge incident that sparked a melee with the Dragons.

An unusual play saw Daniel Saifiti make the initial contact with St George Illawarra winger Mikaele Ravalawa, glancing him with a no-arms hit and pushing him into his brother Jacob Saifiti, who then delivered a clear shoulder charge.

During the tackle, Knights five-eighth Kurt Mann was struck by Ravalawa’s shoulder and knocked out; awkwardly jammed against the Dragons winger by lock Connor Watson, who also entered the collision without using his arms. Players from both teams clashed after the incident.

Jacob Saifiti copped a grade one charge and will be banned for one match with an early guilty plea; two games if he challenges and is found guilty at the judiciary.

It is a fresh, painful headache for Newcastle, with coach Adam O’Brien saying post-match that he would struggle to name a 21-man squad for next round due to a rapidly mounting injury toll.

Jacob Saifiti (L) makes a shoulder charge on Mikaele Ravalawa (R), who inadvertently KOs Kurt Mann (2R). (FOX Sports)

Dragons hooker Andrew McCullough copped a $1500 contrary conduct fine (reduced to $1150 with an early guilty plea) from the same match, related to an incident involving Knights No.9 Jayden Brailey.

Two charges arose from the Roosters vs Warriors match on Sunday, with New Zealand prop Bunty Afoa also facing a ban of one or two matches for a grade one shoulder charge on debutant halfback Sam Walker.

Roosters lock Victor Radley copped a $1500 fine (reduced to $1350 with an early guilty plea) for a dangerous contact incident involving Jazz Tavaga.

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