South Sydney have extended Newcastle’s miserable club record to 17 straight losses, thrashing the Knights 34-12 at Hunter Stadium on Sunday.
Rabbitohs halfback Adam Reynolds was back to his devastating best, pulling the strings on four South Sydney tries, while fullback Greg Inglis produced a candidate for four-pointer of the season when he touched down millimetres inside the dead-ball line to open the scoring.
Conversely the only highlight for the Knights came when Jake Mamo produced a brilliant individual try late on to set up a farewell conversion for retiring backrower Jeremy Smith.
But it was too little to late for the Knights who were out-muscled and out-classed.
The Knights, who as well as farewelling 36-year-old Smith were celebrating the club’s Old Boys Day, had every reason to be up for the clash in front of 15,212 vocal fans.
But it was Souths who jumped out of the blocks, Inglis latching onto a deft Reynolds grubber just inside the dead-ball line to score.
The kick had bamboozled young Knights winger Cory Denniss and despite two other Knights in the area, Inglis got there first, touching down in mid front-flip.
Souths cruised to a 16-0 halftime lead, thanks to Inglis and fellow tryscorers Alex Johnston and Cody Walker.
After the break it looked like more of the same when Aaron Gray muscled his way through some poor Knights defence to make it 22-0.
But 10 minutes later the Knights were on the board after debutant Dylan Phythian jumped in at dummy-half and reached out to score.
The momentum was short lived, however, with South Sydney star Sam Burgess crossing next to the posts after he somehow managed to swivel out of a Sione Mata’utia tackle.
Alex Johnston completed the rout when he touched down in the corner to make it 34-6 in the 65th minute.
The loss means Newcastle now own the seventh-longest league losing streak of all time and the longest of the NRL era.