SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 14: Tigers coach Jason Taylor watches on before the round two NRL match between the Wests Tigers and the Manly Sea Eagles at Leichhardt Oval on March 14, 2016 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

Jason Taylor didn’t deserve to be sacked – yet

The Wests Tigers today sacked coach Jason Taylor just three games into the NRL season. Problem is, he didn’t deserve to be punted just yet.

Taylor took the reigns at Concord in the lead up to the 2015 NRL season, holding the clipboard for a total of 51 games with the club. He’s picked up 20 wins with the club while dropping 31 matches, but Taylor’s Tiger career won’t be defined by how many games he won.

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The coach made the tough call late last season to drop former captain Robbie Farah to NSW Cup, eventually releasing the international rake to South Sydney, a feud lasting longer than twelve months in Campbelltown. Taylor didn’t like the control Farah had at the club and made the call not many coaches would have the guts to do.

Wests Tigers opened the season with a bang this year, thumping South Sydney in the opening round 34-18, putting Jason Taylor both 1-0 on the ladder, and 1-0 against Robbie Farah. But back-to-back losses to Penrith and Canberra will finally see the guillotine drop on Taylor, but how is that fair?

South Sydney, coming off a shocking 2016, lost skipper Greg Inglis to an ACL rupture during the match, were no hope against the Tigers. But they didn’t carry the expectations or roster that both Canberra and Penrith possess.

Both clubs made the finals last season, with many expecting the clubs to finish in the top four this year. They are some of the most elite sides in the competition. Yes, the losses were heavy. But it’s only the third round. The competition is already shaping up to be the closest in over forty years, surely the man deserves more time.

The club confirmed his immediate termination on Monday afternoon, with chairman Marina Go stating the decision wasn’t an easy choice, but the right one.

“Our position has always been to make sure that the Head Coach’s contract is tied to performance and that hasn’t changed. We are committed to building a side that will be in a position to win NRL Premierships and believe that this decision is the correct one for the future of the club,” she said.

Since taking over the club two years ago, Taylor has overseen the meteoric rise of both James Tedesco and Mitchell Moses, implemented Aaron Woods as the club’s new captain, saw the team fall one win short of a finals berth, and sacked a legend of the team in the means of improving it.

The Wests Tigers were a mess when Taylor stepped in. Sure, they’re still not the strongest club around, but Taylor has cleaned out so much mess from Leichardt, he deserves better than to be booted after a handful of weeks.

Robbie Farah is one man sure to have a sly smile on his face today, however. While the coach won the battle of the first round, Farah appears to have won the war, with his rival being sacked just days after the hooker played his 250th NRL match.

Assistant coach Andrew Webster has been named the interim coach, with Ivan Cleary and Todd Payton the first names put forward to take the reigns at the club. The urgency to name a new coach will be crucial, with the entirety of Wests’ big four off-contract this season.

Jason Taylor was never the most successful coach, but he was one of the gutsiest. He just didn’t deserve to be booted, at least not just yet.

11 COMMENTS

  1. Yeah , no one got a chance to smack him in that he mouth , seriously he isn’t a leader , has no qualitys when looking for a coach , he would make a decent assistant but absolutely not a leader

  2. Sironen having a whinge cause he punted his son. Gee Whiz has anybody looked at his sons stats. Gotta be the worst NRL player going around. You can only ride a surname for so long.

  3. Taylor didn’t oversee the meteoric rise of Tedesco and Moses, they are just great players and would thrive anywhere. What he has done is let them run around as they please without the structure Farrah provided and look where that got him.

    Other coaches are 1 and 2, but they have not been sacked, something is not right at the club.

    • Exactly. The headline for this story should be, ‘Jason Taylor didn’t deserve to be signed in the first place’.

    • Ok, i have gone into bat for Taylor, but after reading the comments and history of him , i agree he is a bad coach now, plus when he agreed with the board , the CEO and coaching staff last year that Farah be given the right to play his 250th game, Taylor dropped him on the eve of the game that would have bought him to that milestone, terrible.

      But in saying that Chalky the meteoric rise of Moses has you have metioned is totally wrong , he is very average at best and so is Brooks , to me both those players are and we be only average players for their whole careers , Tedesco maybe something if he remains injury free and Woods is a great bloke but hardly intimidating, and lets be real here, he is not a game winner or a player who can change a game, most league supporters when these two teams came together thought why? this franchise should never have happened, it was always going to be a weak club, sorry to be so blunt but other than their comp win in 2005 what have they achieved, Balmain are gone they have no money, Wests should have took control ages ago , but it’s good that Wests kept them into it, i doubt that Balmain would have been so generious, sh.t i’ve gone way off topic, sorry to bore you with this.

      • Had Tedesco honoured his agreement and gone to the Raiders they would have won the premiership in 2016 (sorry Sharks fans) and Teddy would not have looked back. Now he is resigned to being his teams ONLY “go to guy” and now he is a marked man and IMO the Raiders have already missed their premiership window. Teddy really backed himself into a corner with that decision.

        So penso, it took the old Jedi mind trick from a member of the ZT Jedi council to convince you of what I was telling you? I have said for a long time here that Taylor is not up to scratch as a first grade coach and is an appalling manager of rugby league talent. He isolates, alienates and disillusions players to a point where they either want to leave or get dumped.

        I had the occasion to run into Taylor after a game at Bluetongue stadium (Gosford) and he was arrogant and abrasive even then when he was at Souths. Clearly he has learned nothing since.

        Let him go to Super League and coach the Catalans Dragons so he can teach Frogs to pick up a soccer ball and run at a brick wall. It is about all he is good for.

        • Yes the Force was not with me SSTID, taken over by the dark side will need to awaken from this so i don’t post any more supporting comments about Taylor, he has some serious problems that bloke

  4. How about Elias the grub ,comparing WT spine to that of Melb ,,, snorting falafels is damaging for your Health , what a flog

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