The return of veteran Robbie Farah’s calming influence could not be timed better for the Wests Tigers.
Captain Aaron Woods admitted his team dropped their bundle against a resurgent Gold Coast as the Wests Tigers juggernaut came to a shuddering halt away from home on Saturday night.
But Wests Tigers coach Jason Taylor said seasoned hooker Farah would help rectify that upon his return from a knee injury, ideally against Parramatta next round.
“We hope he is right for the next game,” Taylor said after their 30-18 loss to the Titans.
“He has done what is needed up to this point to play next week.
“He will have a few more boxes to tick over the next week but there is no reason why he won’t be right to go come Monday week.”
There was a time when it seemed Taylor could not wait to see the back of Farah.
The veteran hooker fell out with Taylor when he was told last August that he could explore a release or risk being demoted to NSW Cup if he remained.
Months of drama and speculation finally ended when Farah was named in the Wests Tigers’ leadership group in December.
Farah will be a sight for sore eyes when he returns for a Tigers outfit that blinked when challenged by Gold Coast.
The visitors were found wanting after the Titans turned a 10-0 deficit after 15 minutes into a 30-10 second half lead.
“We just wanted to calm down,” Woods said.
“The momentum swung and we didn’t handle it too well.”
Taylor said Farah’s injection would make a difference.
“We’ve got some really calm heads in the team,” he said.
“Woodsy is a calm guy and (fellow forward) Tim Grant has added something really special in regards to our leadership.
“Robbie is another one who can help us.”
At one stage, Gold Coast defied humid conditions to run in four tries in 17 minutes.
But Taylor was encouraged by the Wests Tigers’ finish in which centre Kevin Naiqama scored his third try and ex-Titan Jordan Rankin also crashed over in the final three minutes.
Taylor dismissed rib injury fears for Naiqama who landed heavily in scoring his third try.
Backrower Chris Lawrence is in doubt for next week’s clash with the Eels after he was placed on report for a dangerous tackle on Ryan James.