WOLLONGONG, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 23: Kalyn Ponga of the Knights looks on during the warm-up before the NRL trail match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the Newcastle Knights at WIN Stadium on February 23, 2019 in Wollongong, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Kalyn Ponga is set to retain the Newcastle captaincy for 2023 after the NRL announced that he and team mate Kurt Mann wouldn't be sanctioned for their toilet cubicle soiree at the Hotel Delany.

The duo were filmed leaving the cubicle, drinks in hands, together last month just an hour after the Knights were soundly beaten by Brisbane north of the border, resulting in hefty public criticism as well as a drug test for the pair.

However, with the NRL not reprimanding either Queenslander, it appears neither will the Newcastle Knights, apart from a likely monetary fine.

Michelle Bishop revealed on SEN that the former Cowboy is unlikely to be punished by his club for the incident.

“The NRL has completed its investigation, Kaylyn Ponga and Kurt Mann have escaped any punishment from the head office, so no sanctions over a visit to the cubicle,” Bishop said.

“The NRL had the pair drug tested, so the Knights were required to provide samples to drug testers employed by the NRL, the players denied any wrongdoing whatsoever.

“They (the Knights) can still do their own investigation and take action from there, but given that head office isn’t going to move on it, it’s highly unlikely that the Knights will as well.

“There was talk at one stage of Ponga being stripped of the captaincy, so we will have to wait and see where that lands.”

QLD v NSW - State of Origin Game 3
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 13: Kalyn Ponga of the Maroonsis tackled during game three of the State of Origin Series between the Queensland Maroons and the New South Wales Blues at Suncorp Stadium on July 13, 2022, in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

Newcastle's new General Manager of Football Peter Parr spoke of the young co-captains, Ponga and hooker Jayden Brailey, when he first arrived at the club, and revealed he didn't expect them to latch onto the role immediately.

"There has been a lack of leadership around the playing group," Parr said during his first media conference for the club.

"It's a young group, just because you make somebody a leader, or put them in a position of leadership, doesn't necessarily mean they're going to grasp the leadership straight away."

The Knights will play their final game of the season on Sunday, a home clash against 2nd-placed Cronulla on Old Boys Day sans Ponga and Mann, and will aim to escape the bottom four with a victory over the Sharks.