After missing the last month of footy due to a hip injury, Ash Taylor returned for the Gold Coast Titans on the weekend against the in-form Storm.
After finding themselves down by a converted try late in the game and the Storm with one man down for the majority of the last 15 minutes, it was time for someone in a Titans jersey to step up and win them the game.
Unfortunately, a name failed to emerge for Justin Holbrook and it has spurred questions to be asked about the future of what was one of the game’s biggest talents.
It looks to be the case that Taylor won’t return in a Titans uniform, leaving him out of contract for 2022 with no noticeable suitors of yet.
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The burning desire to win at all costs wasn’t on display late against the Storm and is an area Fox League’s Michael Ennis believes Taylor must prove if he wants a contract past 2021.
“(Taylor) has now got a 12-week window to show another NRL club that he’s still got the burning desire to play in the NRL next year.” Ennis wrote on Fox Sports.
“There’s no doubt we’ve all seen the skills he possesses but what other NRL coaches will want to see is the desire to compete in a contest. When the Titans had the chance to win the game against Melbourne Storm… Taylor and Jamal Fogarty really struggled to capitalise and win the contest.”
Ennis believes that it is a matter of a changed mindset, urging Taylor to make the shift before he finds himself outside the league looking in.
“The little areas like diving into the line and taking a knock to create space for his outside men takes a tough attitude,” Ennis continued.
“Taylor needs to show how hungry he is by chasing hard on a kick and pinning a fullback into a corner. If he can lead some areas like that he can show why he still belongs at the top level.”
Now it’s all on the Titans playmaker. He has 12 weeks left in the season to prove to the competition and opposition coaches why he is still worthy of a spot on an NRL list,” Ennis added.
“With young talent emerging at every club, Taylor has until the end of the season to prove that he has the grit and determination to play with and lead them on an NRL list.”
Taylor joins a host of Titans teammates who are yet to know their future past 2021, with Anthony Don, Patrick Herbert Tyrone Peachey, Kevin Proctor, Mitch Rein and Sam Stone among an extensive list of off-contract players.
The Titans face the Roosters this Saturday at Cbus Super Stadium in hope of improving on their 5-8 record and 12th placing on the ladder.