Dufty returns to starting role

TOUGH NIGHT: Matt Dufty in action against the Bulldogs. Picture: AAP
TOUGH NIGHT: Matt Dufty in action against the Bulldogs. Picture: AAP

DRAGONS coach Paul McGregor says the Matt Dufty bench experiment is at an end, confirming his No. 1 will start Saturday's match against Newcastle.

It comes after Dufty was benched for last week's match against the Bulldogs, though he was thrown into the action early after Euan Aitken suffered a hamstring injury.

“It's a question that's been raised through the week,” McGregor said.

“Me and Matt had a chat last week and he'd been fatigued for a number of weeks at training and was taking that into games. It was just an open conversation between a coach and a player. 

“Both wingers played well against the Tigers and Jase [Nightingale] was back. He was on the field after 15-20 minutes and we were down 6-0 so it wasn't why we lost.

“It was more around the management of Matt because, when a player's fatigued, and he's telling you he's fatigued, you've got to do something about it.

"He'll [start] at fullback this week.”