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Upton, Boyle lift Knights to NRLW decider

Albert Perez/Getty Images

Newcastle's high-profile recruits have delivered to power the NRLW side from wooden spooners to grand finalists.

Fullback Tamika Upton scored twice while Millie Boyle produced a spectacular solo try in the 30-6 defeat of last season's grand finalists St George Illawarra.

The former Brisbane pair starred on their old turf at Suncorp Stadium in the first of Sunday's double header, three-time champions Brisbane absent after missing the semi-finals for the first time.

Newcastle, who were 0-5 last season, will play the winner of the Sydney Roosters and Parramatta in next Sunday's decider.

The Dragons, who had lost 30-8 to the Knights a week ago, had powered back into the contest when star fullback Emma Tonegato crossed in the right corner.

But a knock-on was spotted on review and a 12-10 scoreline was suddenly 18-6 at halftime, when Knight's five-eighth Kirra Dibb scooted over from dummy-half.

The Dragons dominated territory in the second half, but the Knights' defence held firm.

Upton breezed through for a second try to seal the result before Kiana Takairangi's try was the icing on the cake.

Dragons winger Teagan Berry kept her side close early on, plucking an intercept from Upton's kick return to score against the run of play.

Tonegato's no-try followed, her side unable to score another point as the Knights made an early grand final statement in Brisbane.