It is all coming together for Wests’ Marshall
Ben Horne, Sydney
December 11, 2010
WESTS Tigers golden boot winner Benji Marshall has boldly declared he can ‘‘go to a new level’’ in the 2011 NRL season.
While most players are dragging their feet at this time of year with a gruelling pre-season ahead, Marshall was bouncing around a function room at Leichhardt Oval yesterday, not looking like a man who had played 27 games and five Test matches last season.
‘‘I think I can go to another level, but it’s nice to get back to some form,’’ said Marshall, fresh from spearheading New Zealand to an upset Four Nations win over Australia.
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‘‘I feel like I’m starting to read games a bit better and just lead by example and direct the team around the field. I never used to be able to do that a couple of years back, and it just comes with experience.’’
Hampered by constant injury and affected by the departure of right-hand man Scott Prince from the club, Marshall received a sobering come-down from the Tigers’ 2005 NRL title win.
The 25-year-old admits he was impatient on the field as he willed things to happen and hated reading the negative press about how injury was getting the better of him.
''It was tough always being injured and I questioned whether I was going to get back to where I could be, but I was always confident. It just took time.
''I’ve always been impatient and tried to go for big plays all the time. Now I’ve got to be able to pick my times and get more mature with the ball.
‘‘It was really satisfying coming back from the injuries I’ve had, to get some success, and be noticed after it.’’
Coach and mentor Tim Sheens is quick to point out that the golden boot honour could easily be to Marshall’s detriment next year. But he’s also confident Marshall is smart enough to realise that.
‘‘I believe he’s one of those men that recognises that you don’t want an award like this to be a sidetrack to you,’’ Sheens said. ‘’[Awards] don’t make you a better player next year. If anything, you’ve got to be careful it doesn’t lull you into thinking you’re already there.’’
Unlike Sheens… putting a different spin on things ?
I like his spin…,making sure Marshall doesn’t get a false sense of security
westTAHger last edited by
would like to see constant good goal kicking performances of about 85% & upwards coming together