By Mary Maidiotis

St George Illawarra Dragons centre Peter Mata'utia is keen to continue challenging himself to improve ahead of the round 21 fixture against the Newcastle Knights at Jubilee Oval, Kogarah on Sunday.

The Toa Samoa international admits his body is feeling it after playing his most ever back-to-back first-grade games but is happy with his recovery and consistent performances.

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Mata'utia, 24, believes the Red V defence was back to its best against the Melbourne Storm and some extra work on possession and completion will go a long way towards ensuring they return to winning ways this weekend.

"It was tough against the Storm, we were actually looking forward to that game and I thought our defence was back but we couldn't hold on to the ball and complete sets which let us down, so hopefully we can change that this week," said Mata'utia.

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"I am happy with how I'm performing at the moment but I want to get better, I think that's what's driving me at the moment.

"I want to do my part for the team and get us back in that top eight.

"This is the most number of back-to-back first grade games I've played, I'd like to thank the boys for helping me get here and hopefully I can keep this up for the rest of the year.

"My body's starting to get a bit sore now but I'm trying to do everything I can to be in shape every week and our great medical staff help me start every game.

"We need to try and complete and hold on to the ball this week, as well as challenging ourselves to be better than our opposition.

"I hope everyone turns out on Sunday, it's going to be a great game, we love playing at Kogarah and we won the last time we played there so we can't wait to get back home and we're looking forward to the challenge."