It's finals or failure for us

Anything less than making the finals is not good enough for Wests Tigers this year. And if you think it’s just the players or the coaching staff who think that, you’re wrong.

Plenty of people are telling me how much better we have to go this year - or else. I’ve had plenty of warnings on the street.

But I can understand the frustrations. It’s just as frustrating for us. It’s been devastating not to make the finals since 2005. We try desperately every week, and of course we’ve spoken about turning it around. I think everyone realises how important it is for us to have success this year.

It has to be this year, really. It’s just not good enough if we don’t, not by my standards, not by the team’s standards, and certainly not by the coach’s standards. Tim Sheens re-signed with us for another season last week, and I noticed there was some talk about him challenging himself to succeed by only extending by the one season. But we, as players, need to challenge ourselves, too.

Over the years, when we haven’t made it to the finals, it’s always been the coach who gets much of the blame. But I think, as players, we need to take more responsibility and start pointing the finger at ourselves a bit more.

I have a big role to play in the team, so I’m conscious of how big a year I have to have as well. But I’m pretty pumped about this season. I’ve got a good feeling; I know there’s something different. I feel good inside myself about the team, and about the way I’m going to play this year.

I’ve only just turned 25, and I’ve still got a few things up my sleeve and things that I need to learn. When I can play a full, all-round balanced game, without having to think about it, that’s when I know I’ll be where I want to be.

I think I’m a bit more mature this year in my game, not trying to force so many things. Last year I think I had too many errors in my game, and I’ve been trying to work on minimising those, extra passing and catching. If I don’t try to go for the big play all the time, and just pick my times better, my errors will come down. When I try too hard is when the errors come. When I’m just playing my game, and I know the time’s right to go for something big, that’s when I should go for it, not just because I haven’t touched the ball for a while or just to do it. I think about when to do it now.

But the aim every year is to get better and better. This year I just feel like something’s on its way. It’s something I haven’t felt before.

We’ve got the biggest forward pack we’ve had, and that goes a long way towards winning games. I’ve noticed a change so far in the amount of offloads we’re starting to get away. Timmy Moltzen slipped into halfback last week very well - I don’t think he realises how much talent he has. But I also think Blake Ayshford is going to have a massive year. He is killing it at training; he’s just so deceptive. And Keith Galloway, I think he’ll push for a representative jumper this year. Having Gareth Ellis back after the year he had last year, and Chris Heighington fit … I could keep going through the whole squad. And that’s important, too. We seem to have some good depth.

I’m more excited this year than I have been for some time, largely on the back of what we did towards the end of last year. It felt good at the time and I think everyone wants to get that feeling back again. That’s why we’re so hungry for it. I think we were as good as any of the teams in the competition, playing like we were. It’s exciting to know what we can do when we play at our best.

But it’s also frustrating, because we didn’t make the finals even after playing like that.

Hopefully we can continue our good start this year and not have to rely on the end of the season. When we’re at our best, we’re going to be hard to beat, but we’ve got to find that consistency. There’s been far too many close games that we should have won but we haven’t. But if we can continue the good work, and fix our consistency, we’ll have a good shot at making the semis

By Benji Marshall

Anything less than making the finals is not good enough for Wests Tigers > this > year

It should never be good enough ANY year!
I think it’s a joke when clubs set a 50% mark as their benchmark. Teams who play finals footy with this sort of win/loss ratio does not deserve to have a shot at the title IMHO.
With WT they have had the personnel and strike power to acheive much higher than this for the past 4 years.
The less of these rubbish articles the better. Just get out there and play footy like the WT supporters know you can each week, and the rest will fall into place. Anything below top 4 this year and it’s not good enough in my books.

Where does it say that 50% is their benchmark?

G’day Everyone

Although I read the forum every day, I have not posted on here for a very very very long time. In fact this is my first post in the “new forum”. Some of the older forum members may remember me from my original post back in July 2005 when I confidently claimed that the Tigers would win the comp after disposing of the Roosters – we were sitting 9th on the ladder at that stage. I was laughed at told to settle down and generally chastised for sharing my bold yet accurate prediction…I am glad to see nothing has changed on the forum after 5 years. :slight_smile:

Anyway, I am not planning on making any predictions at this early stage of the season, however, I do agree with Benji’s sentiments and have that feeling that that something special is going to happen this year. Will it be another Premiership? Well, only time will tell, however, if the players are going to be any chance at repeating the highs of 2005 they will need (as Benji rightly points out) consistency in their performances week in and week out.

The Tigers do not need to blast teams off the field every week. All they need to do is concentrate on the little aspects of their game. Do them right, consistently over the regular season and opportunities and I dare say success will come.

One thing I am concerned about is Benji’s current media commitments. His commitments seem to bring a lot of attention his way and I just hope that this does not affect his focus and/or mental preparation for game day. Yes he has matured as a player, and yes he has had media exposure in the past, however, he is still young and sometimes too much attention on a young player can undo a lot of past good.

I may be wrong about Benji and the effects of the media on his focus/preparation (and I hope I am), but I am pretty sure that the Tigers will have a fantastic and successful year so long as they are consistent.

Strap in and enjoy the ride!!

A Happy Easter to you all……

A win today would help.

when the team is confident and hungry for success anything can be achieved.
I have a good feeling as well about finals footy this year.
but gonna have to wait til late august,( hoping a finals place is secured with 4 or 3 rounds to go) to see.
when wests-tigers get into finals, only have to concentrate on the game they are playing and win that one.

The substance of the article itself is nothing we don’t already know about, at least Marshall is saying is not simply the coach’s fault when the team doesn’t make the finals each year. There has been plenty of talk coming out of the Tigers about how this season it’s make the finals or else…Well they have to produce it on the field. I don’t want to see the Tigers turn in an effort like the Roosters match every second week followed up by an effort like the Eels the week after. I want to see the Tigers take to the field with the effort they put in against the Eels every week.

The team would damn well want to be switched on when they run out against Canberra this afternoon.

Heard it all before, last year, in 2008, in 2007 etc etc

welcome to the forum again Agitator!

re benji: Premierships are won in the mind. This season the squad KNOWS that most other teams are not as good as theirs. That kind of confidence is hard to get

yes i hear you ink …but we definately have the depth we have been lacking in past years …today against the faiders is a stern test … a quality side beats them pretty easily ,a mediocre side struggles and just wins or gets beaten , i favour the quality side this year …


Heard it all before, last year, in 2008, in 2007 etc etc

Yep, I’m sick of this article too, its about the 1ooth time its been written, just a different author this time.

Just win games that you should win (like today) and you’ll make the 8.

@tiger tigers:

yes i hear you ink …but we definately have the depth we have been lacking in past years …today against the faiders is a stern test … a quality side beats them pretty easily ,a mediocre side struggles and just wins or gets beaten , i favour the quality side this year …

Not so much worried about todays game, yes these articles are almost templated….dont talk it just do it.
But just on Canberra in canberra, if we do lose today I wont be slitting me wrists…they beat the Storm down there last year


A win today would help.

I dont know why, but i have a gut feeling todays game is a massive one for us. I just feel that a win today will see us go on and have a consistant year, but a loss will mean we’ll be hot and cold again. just a gut feeling.

Raiders have the highest mistake rate in the comp so far, even more so than the Sharks. The Tigers simply cannot afford to lose this one given the form Canberra are in at present, especially if they are serious about becoming a consistent winning side.

The Tigers will finish in the Top 6 this year. We have already seen 2 teams fall out of the 8 and will struggle to gain momentum to get back in once they are both ravaged through Origin. Neither of these 2 teams have the depth to survive.

I win today is a must and I for one are very confident our season starts today. After today and next week, everyone will have the Wests Tigers on thier lips as title contenders.

I’ve put my money where my mouth is for today (plus 12 points) and the Season. Make us all proud boys, and also Tim Sheens. He deserves it more than any of us!!! :sign:

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