THE Newcastle Knights are confident their back-up hookers can get the job done in the absence of Jayden Brailey and say there is no urgency to go shopping for a replacement.
The Knights have confirmed Brailey suffered a ruptured Achilles at training on Saturday and will undergo surgery later this week.
The 25-year-old, who was one of Newcastle's co-captains last season, is expected to face between five and eight months on the sidelines, but medical staff are confident he will still feature in 2022.
When Brailey suffered a season-ending knee injury early in the 2020 campaign, Newcastle were quick to recruit veteran Andrew McCullough on a loan deal from Brisbane.
This time, however, they are confident they have the depth to cope.
"We're not panicking," Knights recruitment manager Clint Zammit told the Newcastle Herald.
"We're just going to be patient. We don't need to make any rash decisions.
"There's no point going out and signing somone who is no better than what we've already got.
"Hopefully Jayden will only be out for half a season, and we've got Chris Randall there, who's done a good job for us in the past.
"And guys like Phoenix Crossland and Kurt Mann can provide some cover."
Zammit said there were other positions the Knights were looking to strengthen on their roster, rather than hooker.
Randall, a former Lakes United junior, has made 12 NRL appearances over the past two seasons, marking his debut in 2020 with an NRL-record 71 tackles against Penrith.
Crossland and Mann are both halves by trade but have proven capable stopgap dummy-halves as required in the past.
Meanwhile, the Knights travelled to Armidale on Monday to start a three-week training camp. They will initially stay at the University of New England before moving to Gunnedah.
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