They are close mates who formed an explosive right edge partnership at Cronulla that helped take the Sharks deep into the NRL play-offs last season.
But star recruits Jesse Ramien and Edrick Lee won’t be pairing up at the Knights in 2019.
Instead, coach Nathan Brown is preparing to play Ramien alongside right-wing specialist Shaun Kenny-Dowall next season.
Lee will be swapping sides and dueling with Nathan Ross for a left wing berth outside returning centre Tautau Moga.
It’s a scenario that won’t bother either player with Ramien excited about the prospect of playing outside Mitchell Pearce and Kalyn Ponga and aiming to force his way into State of Origin contention for the Blues in just his second full season in the NRL.
“I have a few goals – playing Origin is one of them but my main one is to play good consistent club footy,” he said.
“I just need to play consistent footy week in, week out. If I can perform at club level and show that I’m ready for the step up than I think that will settle itself.”
It is no secret the attraction of being able to live back on the Central Coast to be closer to his young daughter LaSharn was a huge factor in Ramien’s decision to link with the Knights.
But so too was the chance to play outside Pearce and Ponga and he hasn’t been disappointed since starting pre-season training in Newcastle early last week.
“I’m loving it around the club,”he said. “All the boys have been very welcoming as well as the staff.
“What Browny [coach Nathan Brown] is building here, he has signed a lot of good people.
“I just thought that as I young player, that’s something I want to be a part of and something I thought I could contribute to.
“Seeing what KP and Pearcey can do as well as Connor [Watson] – I’m just real keen to play with them. I’m excited to even train with them.”
Ramien, who is looking forward to taking on his former club twice in the space of a fortnight at the start of next season, said being around Ponga at training has been an eye-opener.
“He has surprised me massively,” he said.
“We all see KP play and know what he can do but to actually be training with him, it’s unbelievable. The stuff he can do, we all know he is a freak but to see it in person, it’s amazing what he can do with the ball.”
Ramien is confident he will handle the added pressure and expectation in 2019 after a great debut season.
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