Four binned as Wests Tigers crush Newcastle Knights

The NRL's crackdown on high shots kept a low profile but there were still four players sin-binned as Wests Tigers clicked in a 36-18 thumping of Newcastle to kick-start NRL Magic Round in Brisbane.

Halves Luke Brooks and Moses Mbye toyed with the Knights' defence while Adam Doueihi adjusted to his move from five-eighth to centre with a confident two-try performance.

Sin-bins were expected after the NRL's mid-week crackdown on high tackles but - perhaps in a sign players heeded the warning - a second-half report on Mitch Barnett was the only action taken for that offence.

There were still four sin-bins - two from each team - for repeat ruck infringements though.

Tex Hoy, Joe Ofahengaue, Lachlan Fitzgibbon and Mbye - the last three of those in the final 15 minutes - were all sent after repeat penalties with their team defending the line.

The resounding win came after five losses from the Tigers' last six games and validated coach Michael McGuire's selection call.

"It's good to see Mo (Mbye) out there enjoying his footy; there's plenty of heat around this place, a lot thrown at us and deservedly so but now we need to do that over and over again," McGuire said. "That's part of the job, to make decisions and you need to make the right ones for the right reasons.

"(Brooks) was (great); I hope people realise that and I can't believe how much one player can get hammered."

It was a forgettable night for Hoy, who also spilt two kicks that led to tries after being a late call-up for the injured Knights fullback Kalyn Ponga (groin).

Doueihi cruised over for one of those with Hoy on the bench, the Knights' defence flimsy even before they temporarily lost a man.

Mbye, Brooks and Doueihi combined to set up or score five of the Tigers' first six tries, the Knights without a look at the opposition's line inside the first 19 minutes.

They threatened when given the chance but some desperate defence and a handful of near misses meant they never came within striking distance, slumping to a 4-6 record.

Admitting he was no fan of the spectacle created by multiple sin-bins, Knights coach Adam O'Brien said his side was beaten up with and without the ball.

"The club is used to this rollercoaster we're on and we've got to get off it," he said. "It's ingrained in us a little bit and we've got to to find a way to get that winning culture."

Sauaso Sue left the field after a head knock while Kurt Mann was also placed on report for a crusher tackle.