Disenchanted Wests Tigers star Robbie Farah has met with club CEO Justin Pascoe to discuss his request to leave the NRL club.
Pascoe rushed back from a family holiday out of town to sit down with the club’s longest-serving player and his management on Sunday, a day after Farah officially sought a release.
The meeting came amid speculation of an extraordinary backflip by the joint venture, with a News Corp report saying Pascoe had offered Farah a four-year deal to finish as a one-club player just two months after he was encouraged to seek another club.
After weeks of stubbornly insisting he would see out his contract with the Tigers despite falling out with coach Jason Taylor, it had seemed likely the 31-year-old Farah was on his way across town with a move arranged to the Sydney Roosters.
All that remained was for Farah’s management and the Tigers to agree on the size of a payout of the two years remaining on his current contract, worth an estimated $2 million.
Roosters CEO Brian Canavan was tight-lipped on the Farah saga when contacted by AAP on Sunday.
“No news as the issue lies with Wests Tigers and Farah,” Canavan said.
The Tricolours’ shock interest in the NSW vice-captain came despite the Roosters already having co-captain Jake Friend, touted as a future State of Origin hooker.
Friend, 25, still has three seasons remaining on his current deal after re-committing with the glamour club midway through 2014.
However his standing would be clouded should Farah join the club.
Friend approached the club about Farah’s possible arrival, but his manager Steve Gillis declined to comment until any potential move was confirmed.
“We’ve got no comment to make because as far as we’re aware it’s between Farah and the clubs he’s talking to,” he said.
Farah’s departure from the club would leave Taylor with just two hookers on the books next season, former Manly veteran Matt Ballin, who is recovering from a knee reconstruction, and promising Manaia Cherrington.
Farah is the Tigers’ sole remaining player from the 2005 premiership team, has played 238 games for the Tigers since his debut in 2005, and captained the side for the past six years.