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In a series analysing who will line up in each position for all 16 teams in the opening round of the Telstra Premiership in 2020, NRL.com looks at the Newcastle Knights.

NRL.com says: There are plenty of permutations for new coach Adam O'Brien to tinker with here, including where to play versatile duo Connor Watson and Kurt Mann.

Mason Lino is in contention to partner Mitch Pearce in the halves but Mann looks to be the front-runner to start the season at five-eighth with Watson training at lock where he could start or perform a roaming role off the bench.

Kiwi Test hooker Danny Levi has left the club for Manly following the recruitment of Sharks dummy half Jayden Brailey.

With Bradman Best to miss the start of the season due to a fractured foot, there is a centre battle between Hymel Hunt, Tautau Moga and Gehamat Shibasaki. Hunt could start on the wing.

Sione Mata'utia suffered a suspected MCL injury in the trial against St George Illawarra and is set to miss round one. 

Jamie Soward says: Connor Watson is the ultimate utility on the bench – he's the best utility in the game at the moment with his running game and all-round skills. Gehamat Shibasaki should start in the centres with Hymel Hunt and Edrick Lee on the wings.

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