SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 15: Benji Marshall of the Tigers makes a break during the round seven NRL match between the Penrith Panthers and the Wests Tigers at Centrebet Stadium on April 15, 2012 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Matt Blyth/Getty Images)

Could 2018 be Benji Marshall’s last in the NRL?

The appointment of Ivan Cleary has seen a host of players join the Wests Tigers for the 2018 season. None more intriguing than the return of Benji Marshall.

The 2005 premiership winning star has re-joined the club after spending the past three seasons in the NRL with the St George Illawarra Dragons and Brisbane Broncos.

Highly criticised for his on-field performances whilst at the Dragons, Benji showed glimpses of magic as he rejuvenated his career under the guidance of Wayne Bennett.

Looking to make amends, Marshall has been tasked with passing down his knowledge to new halves pairing Josh Reynolds and Luke Brooks. His experience will prove to be invaluable for a side that has farewelled a number of fan favourites to rival clubs.

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In what could be Benji’s final season in the NRL, one ponders what Ivan has planned for the 268 game veteran.

Having played over 200 games for the Tigers, Benji is determined to help the club mount a strong premiership campaign.

With Josh Reynolds and Luke Brooks promised to start the season, Benji’s leadership and experience could see him play the utility role as he did for Brisbane last season.

The 32-year-old may be nearing the end of his career, but Tigers fans are no doubt eager to see Benji’s fancy footwork and trademark flick pass spark an exciting attack for Ivan Cleary’s men.

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A first-grade spot is not guaranteed, but it would be great to see Benji end his career on a high and play for his beloved Tigers in 2018.

17 COMMENTS

  1. We need benji on a fox show… he is such a great personality and understands the game better then 99% of the rest of fox

  2. As much as I like Benji i dont see him snaring a starting spot this year and will struggle for time if he grabs a bench spot. Should’ve retired

  3. You can pass down your knowledge at training as much as you like but it’s not as good as being on the field with the younger less experienced players. I can’t see Benji getting much game time to do that.

    • Benji is that last guest left at a party after it is over… who WON’T leave! He was one of the best at his peak but has nothing left to give on the field I am afraid. His main use now is coaching and mentoring young players off the field. Why didn’t Benji finish his career in England where the game is slower and the defence is a step behind. It might be just the advantage that Benji needs. He has been great for the game on and off it so it is a shame to see him limp to the finish line like this. Oh well, at least he will get to finish his career at the club where it all started which is fitting.

      • I’d say that is Farah! hes the 1 that should leave but wont!. He brings nothing to the game and cannot mentor those who are better than him,
        Benji has a lot to give in terms of Mentoring the likes of Brooks who hasn’t yet produced for the tigers… and with Reynolds Hamstring injury they’ll need a decent replacement and that is not Lolohea.

        • Fair call about Farah. The in fighting between Farah and Benji nearly destroyed the Tigers. Now he is Souths problem and I would rather see a younger player given a chance as a backup to Cook.

          We are in agreement then about Benji having a lot to offer in mentoring and coaching then. I wouldn’t waste my time on Brooks though if I was Benji. Brooks was overhyped from day one with comparisons to Andrew Johns and all the time it was just Tedesco and Moses that made him look better than he was. Lolohea on the other hand is a talent worthy of Benji investing time into. He i s way ahead of Brooks who won’t last tge season if there is any pressure for his position.

    • Pity the NRL don’t have a “side ways running meters stats”
      Lamb chop is the “Ronaldo “ of the NRL in this Dept

  4. benji should be in the centrelink Que awaiting 2 see if he qualifies for the pension & as for the westigers all the betting agencies have them for the wooden spoon

    • So centrelink isn’t in the blacklist then, only when it is applied to “Hillbilly Mick”. “CES Mick” it is then.

  5. I saw a fair bit of value in what he did for the Broncs. If he does the same for the Tigers half (would say Halves but Reynolds wont listen to anyone else’s opinion) then that will set them up nicely, if he comes in for a few to cover injury they could do a lot worse also. Should be a good last season for him.

  6. I always assumed he was coming back for a mentoring role and would play reserve grade, while filling in at NRL for injuries. Guess he could play a utility role and be effective. At least he’s coming back for the right reasons though, not just to step into a first-grade jumper, always good to see players end up back at the club they truly belong

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