It was leave Sydney or go to jail: Fifita...

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Kickoff: 3pm, Sunday 19 June
Venue: Leichhardt Oval
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Aladinsane
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It was leave Sydney or go to jail: Fifita...

Post by Aladinsane » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 2:33 am

It was leave Sydney or go to jail: Fifita

THE magistrate couldn't have made it any clearer for Wests Tigers prop Andrew Fifita: "Either get out of Sydney or I'm sending you to jail."

Having just turned 18, Fifita was caught in a dangerous cycle of gangs and violence in western Sydney, running amok in Mt Druitt, Quakers Hill and Doonside.

Three years and a stint in the infamous NSW country town of Griffith later, Fifita has transformed himself into one of the NRL's hottest prospects.

Good judges rate him the best emerging front-rower in the game - and having inked a $900,000 three-year deal with Cronulla last Wednesday, he has the pay packet to match the praise.

Outspoken, confident and immensely talented, he is the latest example of how rugby league can be like a Betty Ford Clinic for wayward youth.

"It was just the usual stuff young boys get up to, we were running from the police and causing trouble," Fifita said.

"I had to get out of Sydney because I was already on bail conditions. I'd been in another fight and then there was a big riot with weapons out at Doonside. That's what happens and you learn your lesson.

"It was either go to jail or get out of Sydney, so I went back to Griffith. My best mate Michael McLeod was the only one who visited me. He showed me what true friends are."

So the nephew of former St George forward John Fifita got back on track away from the spotlight.

He finished his HSC, re-connected with rugby league, got a contract offer to play rugby union with the ACT Brumbies, a part-time offer from Cronulla and then a full-time deal with Wests Tigers.

Today at Leichhardt Oval, Fifita will take the field against the Melbourne Storm with one objective - to show up Kiwi international and Storm forward Adam Blair.

Both Fifita and fellow Tigers prop Bryce Gibbs signed with Cronulla last week, part of a Concord clean-out designed to accommodate Blair as a marquee recruit next season.

"We can't wait. To play this one bloke who's taken most of the boys' spots in the team ... can't wait," Fifita said.

"It's been a bit upsetting because all the boys are really tight. Don't get me wrong, he's a really good forward. But I would love to have stayed at the Tigers.

"It's heartbreaking, but it's done now and the Sharks is where I'll be."

They are brave words from a rookie prop, but at 114kg and 194cm, Fifita has the frame and game to back them up.

In a sign of his maturity, Fifita now has his 15-year-old cousin Jamali Hanman living with him in Blacktown.

Aware that Jamali was headed down the wrong path, the Tigers forward intervened.

"I grew up leading a troubled life and then saw a different way, so that's why I've got him with me," he said.

___________________________________________________________________________________________
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By that a line by Andrew , you can conclude, at least in his eyes that...
1) He wanted to remain a Tiger.
2) He would have remain a Tiger , if Wests didn't chase Blair. :rant
3) Blair has 100% been signed sealed & delivered & Andrew just let the Wests Tigers worst kept secret out of the bag.
4) Fireworks and massive hits are inevitable come 3pm at Leichhardt this afternoon.

The Plot thickens....and bring on the rumble


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Post by Tigerdave » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 4:22 am

yeah I guess we'll see if the board made the right decision, considering his age compared to Blair's, I'm not so sure. The potential of Fifita vs Blair's current ability.

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Post by Icon » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 5:10 am

i keep saying it, we should have paid over for Fifita. This will be a give mistake. Letting two front rowers go for a second rower.

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Post by Tiger Watto » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 7:39 am

Great violin piece... Surprised he didn't mention how he has been shopping himself around since mid last year and how the club offered to take up the option for 2012 but couldn't match the money.

Then again, that doesn't sound as good for a movie strip?!
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Post by happy tiger » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 8:59 am

$900 k for 3 years Thats big bucks for a guy who go sideways on most occasions


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Post by Tigerdave » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 9:18 am

happy tiger wrote:$900 k for 3 years Thats big bucks for a guy who go sideways on most occasions
It is a lot of money and I can understand why WT could not/would not match that....especially for such a young forward

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Post by cunno » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 9:25 am

Interesting story, reading the posts puts different perspectives on it, which I found useful, all I can add is that I'm glad a young bloke got himself (with the help of others) back on track and the value of sport in that process.

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Post by russelldp » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 9:27 am

It's unfortunate that many of these young guys gauge their success as footballers on the value of their contracts, rather than on field achievements and off-field contributions to enhance their club. Andrew Fafita has achieved nothing in these areas yet and he should take a look at some real professional club men like Lawrence and Heighno. My humble advice to Fafita would be to shut your mouth and just play football! Same goes to Gibbs- you are not a celebrity- get off Twitter & Facebook, stop whining and work at getting yourself out of the bottom half of NRL prop forwards. Since 2005, Gibbs has been a common denominator in a forward pack that has continually let Tigers fans down- that's why the club is happy to let you go. The Board doesn't care how "close" the players are unless they are performing. Unfortunately for some of these gen Y guys, they don't subscribe to the fact that as players, you reap what you sew- unless you take the soft option and go to the Sharks.


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Post by tiger tigers » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 9:37 am

im getting tired of this ADAM BLAIR BS he is not going to be a very popular person at the club going on all the crap talk about him .....good luck to fifita ...900k can set him up for life if he has the right people looking after him ......

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Post by Snake » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 9:43 am

In 2 seasons time it will be Fifita who!

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Post by softlaw » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 9:52 am

Fifita will end up being a good prop but there is no way he is worth $300k per season to the Wests Tigers over the next 3 years.
Is he worth that much to the sharks, who knows. They certainly need new props more than we do so maybe.
Good luck to him at his new home and I for one can;t wait to see Blair leading the Tigers pack for the next few years. He's exactly what we need.
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Post by willow » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 10:09 am

To keep Fifita at the Tigers on that sort of money would mean no Blair plus the Tigers would still be losing Gibbs in any event. As long as he puts in for the rest of the season that's all we can ask now. and next season it means more opportunities for the likes of Begovich and Groat who have plenty of size and talent about them.

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Post by Muffstar » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 10:17 am

Fifita's calling it as it is. Real shame he is going - I am sure Sheens will have the team focused not only on Blair today otherwise we will get touched up.

But hey in 3 years time we may pay Fifita 500K to come back !

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Post by steven_tiger » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 10:29 am

Even though I am not privvy to all the inside info, I find them really strange comments from him .
He better have a big game.
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Post by MacDougall » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 11:14 am

Absurd comments that realistically should cost him his position in first grade for the remainder of the year. Not only is he inciting negativity towards a future signing, he has also apparently confirmed something the Tigers have been obviously trying to keep under wraps. I'd be offering him to the Sharks as of Monday. See if they want to toss us one of their cheapo Parra ring-ins in return. At least they'll shut up and do the job. Andrew Fifita sounds like the next Willie Mason to me.

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Post by tigerdre » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 11:28 am

Very interesting interview.Its obvious that this is the reason why we have been playing badly.
But i cant stop thinking that our players have got stop this childish rubbish.They seem like little rebels & because they didnt get there way they have decided not to play.
If you let players run your club you will never be a success its worrying & i feel for Blair to be honest it seems like he is walking in to a disgruntled class room & no one wants to play with him.
Totaly agree with McDougal.Fifita should be dropped. this would show who is boss

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Post by tiger05 » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 11:38 am

Snake wrote:In 2 seasons time it will be Fifita who!
That's the key point isn't it. Who knows how he'll turn out.

In my opinion I think paying overs would be worth it. I also think he's gone because we couldn't get rid of some other players.

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Post by MacDougall » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 11:39 am

This is the sought of crap that will make Blair reconsider his signing at the eleventh hour methinks.

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