I couldnt see this posted already.
Interesting read from someone who has been there
A representative forward, dumped to reserve grade in a bid to force him out of the club after a fallout with the coach.
Elijah Taylor knows better than most what Robbie Farah is going through. While Taylor was unable to crack back into the first grade side when he was banished by Penrith coach Anthony Griffin, the New Zealand international predicts Farah will be back in the Tigers’ top squad in time to register his 250th NRL appearance this season.
“I think he will play first grade again [this year], definitely,” said Taylor, who has helped cover the void at dummy half.
“He works hard on his game, his experience comes to my mind. He’s the kind of player, when I’m warming up next to him before a game, he gives me confidence because I know how much experience he has … he’s a club great.”
Taylor was touted as a potential Panthers captain during the pre-season. Having been overlooked for that honour he was then dropped to reserve grade because Griffin believed he wasn’t aggressive enough for the NRL. The 26-year-old was barred from team training sessions for the last six weeks of his stint at the foot of the mountains before the Tigers offered him a lifeline. Which is why Taylor can empathise with Farah’s plight.
“I can actually,” Taylor said. "At that time, mentally it’s very tough to get up for games and play good footy for the reserve team.
“I’ve been in those shoes and it really tests your character. All we can do is work hard with what you can control and that’s what I did. Then the opportunity at the Tigers came up and I took it.”
Farah’s long-time rival Michael Ennis shocked the league world by rejecting a one-year extension at Cronulla to retire at the end of the season, sparking speculation Farah could replace him at the Sharks. Regardless of whether he sees out the final year of his contract, Taylor believes Farah will reach the 250-game milestone with the Tigers this year.
“I am positive he will get there,” Taylor said.
"He’s an experienced campaigner, knows what he needs to do. The coach has told him what he needs to do and he’ll do it. He wants to play first grade … we need him in the team.
"We’ve got some big games coming up, big games we must win. The experience that he has in controlling football games and controlling the tempo, especially in that position, he’s a master.
“That’s why I’m confident he will play again. We don’t have much experiences games-wise as a team and Robbie can bring that out.”
Tigers coach Jason Taylor is of the belief the club’s trio of promising young playmakers – Mitchell Moses, Luke Brooks and James Tedesco – receive earlier ball when Farah is absent from the side.
“I couldn’t see that, I hadn’t seen enough to think ‘what’s going on here?’” Elijah Taylor said.
"What happened before me I can’t control, I couldn’t see anything. But the games I did play with Robbie, I thought he went really well.
“Against Penrith he scored a try and controlled the game really well. Again, I don’t make selection decisions.”
Should the Tigers beat Parramatta on Saturday, they will edge their way towards the cusp of the top eight.