Knights embrace four-day NRL turnaround 

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Knights embrace four-day NRL turnaround 

His coach says there’s be no excuses and Newcastle backrower Mitch Barnett says a four-day turnaround between NRL matches is a task the Knights are eager to take on.

Having kept their finals ambitions on track with a 34-24 win over Canberra on Sunday, the Knights are back at Suncorp Stadium on Thursday to face Brisbane.

One of five clubs sitting on 18 points going into round 21, Barnett knows he and his teammates can’t fall flat against the Broncos in the race to make the top eight.

“It’s definitely new but it’s a challenge that we’re all taking head on,” Barnett said of the short gap between matches.

“Just all about getting the body right and then we just had a look at the Broncos today (Wednesday).

“Just trying to focus more on ourselves and just bring in what we brought at the start of the Raiders game.”

That start against the Raiders was inspired by returning teenage star Bradman Best as the Knights surged to an 18-0 lead inside 20 minutes.

A late Canberra burst however reduced the final margin to 10 points and was something Barnett said the Knights could ill-afford to replicate as they chase a fourth-straight win over the Broncos.

“No, definitely not. All the good sides they finish games off,” Barnett said.

“It was 34-12 … if we want to be a good side, we’ve got to learn to close them out.

The Knights welcome back Mitchell Pearce to have the former NSW halfback on the field with Best and star fullback Kalyn Ponga for the first time this season.

Hooker Jayden Brailey however has been rested with Chris Randall to take over the No.9 jersey.

The Broncos have replaced Kotoni Staggs with Jesse Arthars after his season-ending knee injury while Albert Kelly was a late inclusion on the interchange bench at the expense of TC Robati.

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