You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content
Newcastle Knights recruit Kurt Mann.

Arguably the most intriguing recruit of the Knights' off-season signing spree, Kurt Mann's utility value could make him a Fantasy bargain in 2019.

The former Storm and Dragons player has played fullback, wing, centre and in the halves, but he could be set for yet another positional switch with Newcastle coach Nathan Brown keen to play Mann as a hooker.

If he manages to grab the No.9 jersey for round one, Mann looms as a bargain, even if the Knights use Danny Levi as a bench hooker.


Mann's versatility and the fact he has long been a transfer target for the Knights suggest they plan to give him a run somewhere in their 17, and the injury to Slade Griffin and an apparent lack of faith in Levi as a starter means there's a genuine chance Mann could start in what would be his first season in a brand new position.

He's also very cheap, having scored 23.5 points a game in a 2018 season when he spent most of his time coming off the bench.

Five key matchups of the Knights' 2019 draw

He also played four games at five-eighth and four on the wing. Hookers are more heavily involved, particularly defensively, than those positions so his points-per-minute should skyrocket if he's a starting rake.


He's a great utility option, but does Mann have what it takes to be a starting NRL hooker?

Levi has represented New Zealand and is no slouch, and there is a strong argument for using Mann as a bench hooker who can also cover any backline position if an injury strikes.

If he's not starting, Mann becomes a much more unreliable Fantasy prospect.

There's also every chance he gets shifted into the outside backs at some stage for injury cover, where his Fantasy scoring would also dip back to the kind of levels we saw last season.

He's undervalued for a starter but he's still well above base price so you'll want to be confident of regular 30+ scores if you're going to add him to your team.

To buy or not to buy?

If he's wearing the No.9 in round one, get him in your team. Otherwise, the smart move is probably to hold off and see how the Knights' line-up shapes up in the opening rounds.

If he's named on the bench Mann's versatility could even count against him if there are mid-game injuries in the backline, which could leave him playing limited minutes in the low-scoring outside backs positions.

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

Premier Partner

Media Partners

Major Partners

View All Partners