New Wests Tigers coach Michael Maguire has hosed down all reports suggesting club legend Robbie Farah will retire, and says the 34-year-old still has a lot to play for in 2019.
Following the deregistering of CEO Justin Pascoe due to the Tigers failing to disclose their proposed ambassadorial role for Farah post-retirement, the joint venture club were hit with a $750,000 fine and were told the $639,000 they wanted to give to Farah would be included in the 2019 cap.
Farah earlier in the week said he was happy to take the bullet should the club need to shed players in order to be cap compliant next season, although Maguire told the Sydney Morning Herald Farah would do no such thing.
“I’ve known Robbie for a long time, and the maturity and leadership he shows now will help take this club forward,” Maguire told smh.com.au.
“I expect him there in 2019. All his experiences he’s had through his career will only assist me growing young men.
“He was at training this morning, did everything and was in really good spirits.”
Regardless of whether the cap hit will be given to the Tigers all next season or spread out over four years (the proposed length of Farah’s role), the Tigers should still be able to keep all of their players, given their strong current salary cap position.
A similar case years ago saw the Roosters sign club great Anthony Minichiello to an ambassadorial role, although the difference was the Tricolours were transparent during the entire process.
“The NRL rules provides mechanisms to allow clubs to retain the services of players after they retire to promote their clubs sand the game,” an NRL spokesperson told SMH.
“But those rules require clubs to declare those deals so they can be assessed by the cap auditor.
“The Roosters declared the Minichiello role with his club and it was approved by the salary cap auditor.”