The Gold Coast Bulletin

Hoy’s big chance to shine


NEWCASTLE coach Adam O’Brien has urged rising star Tex Hoy to seize the opportunit­y in the No.1 jumper, with marquee fullback Kalyn Ponga expected to be sidelined for at least two weeks after suffering an adductor strain.

Ponga won’t play in Friday’s Magic Round clash against the Tigers, and is expected to sit out another week. The Queensland representa­tive suffered the injury in the win over Canberra in Wagga last Saturday and O’Brien on Thursday confirmed Ponga had sustained a minor groin tear.

He said the star No.1 will travel to the Sunshine Coast on Sunday and will be reassessed in the lead-up to next Thursday’s clash against the Cowboys in Townsville.

“At this stage it is a minor tear in his groin, but when I say minor, I’m not willing to push him,” O’Brien said.

Hoy (pictured) will replace Ponga and O’Brien has full faith in the 21-year-old, who has played four games in the No.1 jumper this season.

“The positive is Tex has trained with the spine the whole week and he has played a bit of football with us now,” he said. “He understand­s his role and the type of game we want to play, and I’ve got full confidence in him.

“Obviously, we’ve got Origin around the corner, which I’d imagine KP is a certainty for, so it is a good opportunit­y (for Tex) and we get a bit of a head start on that.”

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