Knights coach Adam O'Brien does not regret dropping Greg Marzhew last week despite admitting the winger could have been the difference in their narrow 18-16 loss to Sydney Roosters. Marzhew, 26, returns against Penrith at BlueBet Stadium on Saturday after being stood down for last week's home match against the depleted Roosters for being late to the team bus the week prior in Brisbane. Newcastle fell 18-6 behind after a poor first half against the Roosters but went agonisingly close to snatching a late victory, only to miss a number of potential try-scoring opportunities. "Certainly Greg, last week, would have been handy," O'Brien said. "We left enough tries out there. You'd like to think someone like Greg would have grabbed those." Marzhew, signed from the Gold Coast in the off-season, has been a revelation for the Knights this year, scoring 10 tries in as many games. He is also among the competition's best for run-metres and tackle-breaks. The Knights had a handy replacement in versatile outside-back Enari Tuala last week, who more than held his own, but the absence of Marzhew's hulking frame, particularly in kick-returns and attack, was noticeable. However O'Brien, speaking on Friday ahead of the team's trip to Sydney, said he did not regret the club's decision to stand down Marzhew in light of last week's loss. "It's the right thing long term for the club," he said. "We needed to make it and we stayed consistent to a standard we set last year. "If we're going to get the club where it needs to be, then it starts with making consistent decisions." Tuala and Bradman Best copped the same club-imposed punishment as Marzhew late last season for being late to the team bus, coincidentally at the same hotel and after playing the same opponent, Brisbane. But the Knights came under scrutiny from sections of the media this week for perceived inconsistencies in regards to Marzhew's punishment, and how they dealt with Kalyn Ponga and Kurt Mann last year following their toilet cubicle incident. But O'Brien slammed that criticism, saying the incidents weren't comparable. "The double standard would be had we let Greg play," he said. "It was the same incident, same hotel to those guys [Best and Tuala] who stood out for a game. "In terms of Kalyn and Kurt, well that's incorrect because Kurt was fined. "We couldn't take a game off Kurt because he wasn't playing ... and Kalyn got cleared by the NRL integrity unit. "Again, we couldn't take a game off him because he was out for the year. "I'm not too sure where the double standards come from. The standards, if anything, are consistent." Meanwhile, O'Brien said Ponga was vying to be goal-kicker again after returning to fullback. The first-choice kicker in years gone by, he ditched the duties while at five-eighth. He has a career goal-kicking average of 73 per cent. Jackson Hastings' average was 78 per cent prior to this season, but his 2023 strike rate is just 54 per cent. MORE IN SPORT WHAT DO YOU THINK? Join the discussion in the comment section below. Find out how to register or become a subscriber here.